TAFE & Adult Provision Out with the old: bargaining for a new and better deal in disability

One of the major changes to Australian industrial relations laws in 2023 was the cessation of ‘zombie agreements’ (those in place before 1 January 2010 and still in operation despite having passed their nominal expiry date). These all expired in December 2023.

While some employers were granted an extension, most have resulted in transfers to different industrial instruments or members bargaining for new agreements with their employers.

The new IR laws not only included a cessation to zombie agreements but created new options for negotiating parties, one being supported bargaining.

The supported bargaining option means that many of the AEU’s 19 disability services that were on individual zombie agreements will, if approved, be able to bargain together for a joint agreement. This is good news, as we know that collective bargaining leads to better wages and conditions.

The AEU and HACSU applied to the Fair Work Commission on 9 November 2023 to progress bargaining for the relevant disability services, and filed evidence and submissions on 2 February 2024 in support of this application.

We urge disability instructors in day, employment, and business services to attend regional meetings or arrange a visit from your AEU organiser to stay informed.

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