Saturday, 29 October 2011

Joyce gets $5 million while workers forced to strike for $1 per hour

Cairns leads Qantas protest

Laura Packham
Saturday, October 29, 2011
© The Cairns Post

No confidence: Qantas ground crew in Cairns, including Tony Nucifora, Ian Brooke, and union negotiator Janine Aitken have led a vote of no confidence in chief executive Alan Joyce.

QANTAS ground crew in Cairns are leading the way in a protest against the airline's boss.

Staff in Cairns put forward a vote of no confidence yesterday over the way the airline’s chief executive Alan Joyce had handled pay negotiations with unions.

Transport Workers Union negotiator Janine Aitken said the unanimous decision was made during a one-hour stop work meeting. The vote was in response to an ongoing dispute between the airline and unions over pay and conditions. "It’s very significant for Cairns considering this airport hasn’t taken action in 20 years prior to this," Ms Aitken said.

The no confidence motion was tabled at Qantas’ annual general meeting yesterday. Ms Aitken said she was confident other workers would join the call for Mr Joyce to step down from  negotiations. "The workers are just incredibly frustrated and disappointed that there doesn’t seem to be any willingness to come to the table," she said.

Tony Nucifora, an airline operator with 15 years’ experience said he had never seen strike action on this scale before. "I would like to have job security for starters," Mr Nucifora said.

Qantas yesterday revealed the national strikes from engineers, pilots and ground staff had cost the company $68 million since August.

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