AUSTRALIAN Services Union (ASU) members at Wannon Water have voted to impose work bans to support their campaign for a nine-day fortnight.
ASU organiser Luke Cherry said the aim of the bans was not to affect water customers but inconvenience Wannon Water’s administration.
Mr Cherry said he expected ASU members would take action next week to raise awareness about their campaign but could proceed later to works bans if there was no progress in the dispute.
“We are hopeful that Wannon Water will stop fighting with their staff and resume negotiating before industrial action begins,” he said.
The bans endorsed ranged from not completing paperwork expediently to stopping the sampling of water.
“Wannon Water has obligations to its customers,” Mr Cherry said. “The bans will make it harder for Wannon Water to meet them.”
Most staff are on a 19-day, four-week roster but want a nine-day fortnight to gain a better work-life balance.
“They’re looking for more flexibility at work, and have even indicated they may be willing to accept the poor salary increase on the table if the company is willing to improve certain no-cost aspects of the EBA (enterprise bargaining agreement),” Mr Cherry said.
Members had voted 44-4 in favour of taking industrial action, he said.
Wannon Water managing director Grant Green said the authority had contingency plans in place to deal with the impact of any industrial action.
‘‘I am confident that existing levels of service will be fully maintained as the ASU only represent about 25 per cent of Wannon Water employees,’’ he said late yesterday.
“Wannon Water commenced negotiation of a new enterprise agreement in 2012 in good faith and has offered all employees a 7.5 per cent pay increase over three years and to maintain all current employee entitlements, including the entitlement to one rostered day off per month.
“The ASU is demanding that Wannon Water management agree to a 15 per cent pay increase over three years, give its members a nine-day fortnight, pay its members accumulated unused sick leave after 10 years of service and pay an additional one per cent superannuation on top of the 9.25 per cent to be paid under the superannuation guarantee.”