Industrial action threat

The threat of industrial action at Hazelwood Power Station will take a step up today, as union members decide what form of action to implement after a long running dispute over worker redundancies.

Australian Services Union members are expected to resolve today to push ahead with industrial action, after further negotiations over methods used to implement workforce redundancies failed to reach agreement this week. 

“People are being tapped on the shoulder and being told to leave, they just say that is the decision that’s been made and they are not going to budge on it,” ASU spokesperson George Farrugia said. 

“It’s a slap in the face for some of these workers who have been there for a very long period of time – it’s an attack on their livelihood and they are not even being recognised for it.”

Mr Farrugia said it was still unclear whether stop-works would be involved in the action, and hoped the move would convince Hazelwood’s management to make compromises at the negotiating table.

The Express understands there may be moves by management to re-employ about 20 redundant employees under modified contracts. 

In a media release issued on Monday, ASU assistant secretary Richard Duffy said despite the drawn out negotiation process, there were still outstanding issues. 

“ASU members have had enough after the recent breakdown in talks. A key issue still in dispute is how redundancies are carried out, with the company already identifying about 30 people that they want to sack, including several active ASU representatives,” Mr Duffy said. 

Hazelwood’s owner IPR-GDF Suez announced in April they had identified 30 redundant positions in an organisational restructure. 

An IPR-GDF Suez International Power spokesperson said the business was actively working through the various issues raised by the union.