Letter to Alan Joyce Re: Payment of 2018 bonus

Date: 24/03/2020

Dear Alan,

Re: Payment of 2018 bonus to ASU members affected by stand down

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ASU members at Qantas are facing the prospect of many months without work or pay because of the effects of the coronavirus on worldwide aviation and the difficult decisions the company has had to make to stand down staff without pay.

Many if not all of our members will have to utilise their well-earned annual leave and long service leave to make ends meet during this time. Without a doubt many will experience extreme hardship if, as is expected, the travel bans continue for a long time and alternate jobs will be scarce and likely insecure.

On many occasions ASU members have come to the aid of the business and made sacrifices to ensure financial stability — they took a pay freeze in 2001-02 when the aviation industry faced significant challenges post September 11. Most recently they accepted a wage freeze in their last enterprise agreement.

Our members took this freeze on the promise that when Qantas returned to profitability they would share in the results. Qantas’ strong financial position entering this coronavirus crisis is in no small measure a result of the employees stepping up to help the company when asked to.

Now we ask Qantas to step up for ASU members and staff covered by our enterprise agreements by paying the outstanding bonuses owed to ASU members covered by the Australian Services Union (Qantas Airways Ltd) Agreement 11, Eastern Australia Airlines Group and Australian Services Union Agreement 2016, and Eastern Australia Airlines Pty Ltd Group 2 Ground Staff Enterprise Agreement.

In 2018, bonuses of $2000 for full time staff and $1500 for part time staff were awarded but have been frozen until our new agreements are negotiated and finalised. It is very unlikely that these enterprise agreements will be renegotiated in the foreseeable future despite our best efforts. This is not anyone’s fault — it is beyond anyone’s control.

Paying these withheld bonuses now will make the difference to many, many ASU members at Qantas. As you know, many families are “Qantas families” with more than one person affected by the stand downs and limited work so they are doubly affected.

We are calling on Qantas to pay the 2018 bonus to these staff who have been loyal to Qantas. They ask for their loyalty to be acknowledged in these difficult times and that they be paid what they are owed. This will be an important assistance, to help them ride out this difficult time.

We ask that you give this request urgent attention.

Yours faithfully,

Linda White
Assistant National Secretary

Call centres

The Australian Services Union has significant membership in call centres across Australia. 3/08/2022