TWU calls for enforceable rates to be paid no later than October first
The Transport Workers' Union is urging the road safety watchdog to stick to an April 4th deadline for the start date for an Order holding major retailers and manufacturers to account for safety in trucking and for the first enforceable rates to be paid no later than October 1st.
The Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal will this week consider a change to the start date of the Order after applications seeking a delay.
But the TWU says it is vital that those at the top of the supply chain are held responsible for the crisis in transport from the original date while a six-month time period should be set for clients to ensure their contracts reflect the new rates.
"After talking to all parties it is obvious that clients are resisting the payment of safe minimum rates. Transport operators are getting caught in the middle and are finding it hard to adjust their systems because of the resistance from these clients. But this Order makes clear: the payment of safe minimum rates must come from the top of the supply chain," said TWU National Secretary Tony Sheldon.
In addition to the October 1st deadline, the TWU is also arguing for:
- Full transparency of client contracts to ensure contracts allow for safe minimum rates .
- Changes to the Order to take into account split loads and return loads for drivers.
- Payment by clients to transport operators within 30 days of work completed .
Owner driver Frank Black said the resistance of major clients to safe rates was causing fear among drivers.
"The push-back by major clients is causing hard working transport workers to be concerned about getting paid a safe rate for all their work. That's not right and that's not fair.
"I'm appealing to transport operators to stand with us on this one: we can only change our industry by holding those at the top to account," Mr Black said.