THOUSANDS of truckies are pushing for strike action after logistics operator Toll proposed a new workplace agreement.
Transport workers are angry at what they see as threats to their jobs after they’ve driven bumper profits to Toll clients that have profited during the pandemic such as Amazon.
Talks broke down at a negotiation meeting on Wednesday between workers and Toll management, with drivers now filing an application to the Fair Work Commission to hold a vote to go on strike. The move will affect almost 7000 Toll workers who are members of the TWU.
The TWU says the agreement threatens the job security and earning potential of workers by scrapping overtime entitlements, bringing in new workers on worse pay and conditions, and attempting to remove job security protections which would allow Toll jobs to be contracted out to the “lowest common denominator”.
Following a successful ballot of workers, strike action will take place in the coming months.
TWU national secretary Michael Kaine said, “Over the last year, truckies worked harder than ever and delayed negotiations to assist Toll while the effect on the economy played out.
“They are furious that demand has soared, but transport contracts are squeezed and exploitative gig economy models are expanding in transport such as AmazonFlex, forcing workers to suffer through degraded jobs.”
Mr Kaine added that promoting lower standards in the industry will lead to deaths and injuries on the road.
The union is concerned that Toll wants to employ new drivers as part-time workers on rates just above the award minimum and superannuation of 10%; and plans to outsource work and change clauses in the current agreement to engage Toll employees before outside hire.
Toll has been approached for comment.