Thursday 20th Sep, 2018

DPWA calls for end to pilot cutter crew strike “mayhem”

Photo: Ian Ackerman
Photo: Ian Ackerman

THE FIFTH Sydney pilot cutter crew strike since late September is scheduled for Wednesday November 8, and stevedore DP World Australia says enough is enough.

The proposed action by Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) members working on board pilot cutters is to suspend the use of the vessels to embark and disembark pilots in Ports Botany and Jackson.

But the MUA has agreed to exempt some functions from the action including watch keeping at sea, fire rounds, port security watches, safety drills, product tanker and crude oil tanker vessels, passenger cruise vessels, all dealings with emergency equipment and any and all safety and emergency-related issues.

The 24-hour work stoppage comes after the Port Authority of New South Wales, the Australian Maritime Officers Union (AMOU) and the MUA have failed to negotiate a replacement enterprise agreement despite talks starting back in February.

DPWA has called for an end to the industrial action affecting Port Botany terminal operations.

Managing director and CEO Paul Scurrah said the ongoing industrial action was causing mayhem to shipping scheduling in Sydney, which has serious flow-on impacts around the coast of Australia.

“Port Botany is working overtime during the critical pre-Christmas peak season,” Mr Scurrah said.

“These efforts are being seriously hampered by the ongoing industrial unrest. We urge all parties to get back to the negotiating table to work out a solution, to stop the ongoing disruption to port services across Australia.”

Stoppages have occurred on September 26, October 24, October 27 and November 2, with a strike planned for November 8.

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