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Home > News > 2017 > November > Carinity Education wants workers stripped of conditions

Carinity Education wants workers stripped of conditions


Joining a long list of employers such as Streets and Murdoch University, Carinity Education is attempting to leverage unfair industrial rules to strip working conditions.

Carinity Education staff at schools in Brisbane, Gladstone, Hervey Bay and Rockhampton have been forced to ballot on an inferior agreement that would see staff working more for less.

Carinity Education’s plan to strip its employees’ working conditions is very clear:

  • Scrap top-tier teacher classifications, meaning the most experienced teachers could earn up to $8,000 less per year than their state and Catholic school counterparts.
  • Strip working conditions including job share, additional redundancy pay and access to the First Aid allowance for school support staff.
  • Significantly increase the hours of work expected by staff in leadership positions.
  • Limit employees’ access to contemporary leave conditions such as natural disaster leave and domestic violence leave.
Inferior agreement leads to VOTE NO sentiment
With the employer-forced ballot currently underway, members at the four Carinity Education schools are reporting a strong VOTE NO sentiment.
The ballot was also marred by technical issues which led to a subsequent re-issue of the ballot. The reissued ballot will close on Monday, 27 November 2017.
IEUA-QNT Organiser Richard Pascoe said the forced employer ballot came despite serious employee concerns and in the face of protected industrial action which employees voted to take given the employer’s failure to listen.
“The employer’s objective from day one of the negotiation process has been to strip its employees’ working conditions and that objective continues now. 
“If the majority of staff VOTE NO, then the onus is on the employer to return to the negotiating table with an improved offer,” he said.

Protected industrial action underway

Teachers and support staff working in three of the Carinity Education schools (Brisbane, Gladstone, Hervey Bay) commenced protected industrial action from 22 November, with a stop work planned for 29 November.

Mr Pascoe said Carinity Education employees had been left with no option but to take the action in light of the employer’s “take it or leave it” position.

The protected industrial action started on Wednesday, 22 November and includes:

  • A ban on employees attending meetings of staff.
  • A ban on teachers undertaking any duties during their scheduled “Planning, Preparation and Correction Time” other than preparation directly related to teaching students and the assessment or marking of student work.
  • A ban on the recording, or transmission to the employer, of assignment, assessment or exam results relating to students. This ban will not be applied to Year 12 students or students who are leaving the school.
  • A delay by employees in responding to and/or actioning emails (except for emails which deal with: a genuine health or safety matter for employees or students; or child protection matters) for a period of time (such a period will not exceed 30 days).

IEUA-QNT members will also stop work for 60 minutes at 9.00am on Wednesday, 29 November 2017.

Mr Pascoe said taking the protected industrial action is not a decision that was taken lightly but the employer’s lack of respect for staff had left them no choice.

“Our members are taking this action because they care about the schools in which they work – they do not want to see the quality of education provided to their students put at risk. They are also taking this action because they fundamentally oppose Carinity Education’s proposal to create second-tier teachers.

“Teachers who have the same qualifications and who make the same professional judgements as those of teachers at the Catholic and state schools down the road Carinity Education believes aren’t worth the same wages or conditions.

“It’s simply unjust and unfair and our members will continue to campaign against any attack on current working conditions,” he said.

For more on Carinity Education collective bargaining, click here.

Authorised by Terry Burke, Independent Education Union of Australia – Queensland & Northern Territory Branch, Brisbane.