AUXILIARY UPDATE : 26 AUGUST 2015
Progress is occurring on an award for auxiliary firefighters. The fire service has agreed in principle for an award to operate from 1 January 2016.
The award is subject to approval by the government and then an application to the industrial commission.
The award is likely to include gradually phased in higher pay rates for working on weekends, nights and public holidays, and introduce retention allowances.
Auxiliaries who have followed this issue should note a significant breakthrough from recent years where the fire service has fought vigorously against your union’s ongoing efforts to win the respect of an award for auxiliary firefighters.
An award is not yet agreed or finalised, but progress is very promising.
Auxiliary pay increase
Minimum base rates will increase by 2.2 % from 25 October 2015.
This is a flow on of the arbitrated increase won by UFUQ for award covered staff.
Auxiliary union delegates
Your union recently had a rule change to allow for a structured delegate system to exist across the state.
This has benefits for career firefighters, auxiliary firefighters and fire communications officers.
Ultimately, a delegate at every workplace where you and other UFUQ members work is the goal.
A process of having delegates elected at auxiliary stations across Queensland is about to commence.
This process will communicated to you in detail in September.
Station meetings continuing across Queensland
In August 2015 State Secretary John Oliver and Industrial Officer Anthony Cooke visited some stations in Far Northern region.
Auxiliary members had the opportunity to get an update on progress of matters relevant to them.
State wide issues were discussed with all members attending each meeting and local issues were also raised at every meeting.
In September, visits to auxiliary stations in Emerald, Rockhampton, Gladstone, Yeppoon and Bundaberg and Maryborough are locked in for the week of 31 August to 4 September.
Further North Coast Region meetings, and meetings in each of the remaining regions are currently being planned, to occur before the end of this calendar year.
Welcome to new members from Transfield Services – Oakey Airbase
For the first time in the Queensland UFU’s history, we have the pleasure of having members employed at Transfield Services at Oakey Airbase joining our union.
I join with all of you in welcoming our new members into our strong growing union.
Labour Day Holiday committee report
The parliamentary committee examining the proposed restoration of the traditional Queensland Labour Day holiday has released its report.
The committee did not reach agreement on the proposal to restore the traditional Labour Day holiday to May.
The disagreement is split on government –opposition lines.
Government member’s support restoring the century long tradition, opposition members didn’t.
The matter will be debated in parliament.
Our union submitted that the public holiday should be restored to May, as it would allow more people to attend the processions and family day which are always held in May.
You can read a copy of the parliamentary committee report here
Become a member of UFUQ and show your support
2014 saw many new members join or re-join UFUQ. We want to continue to increase our strength in 2015.
Become a member of your union to show you are standing with your auxiliary colleagues as we continue the fight to improve your employment conditions and wages.
As a member, you also have access to the many benefits of coverage you will receive from a registered industrial organisation.
If you are already a member of UFUQ, now is the time to discuss membership of your union with your auxiliary colleagues.
Existing members who refer new members will receive a new auxiliary UFUQ t-shirt in 2015, upon the new member becoming financial (one t-shirt per year for existing members).
Your union continues to send a strong and clear message to QFES and the government about your employment conditions. We are showing them that we have the support of auxiliaries in our efforts to win fair employee conditions for you.
UFUQ needs your support now and will be there to support you should you ever need us!
Have a question or want to organise a station visit?
In 2014, UFUQ representatives visited almost 60 auxiliary stations.
No one but UFUQ can get, or is getting, to that many stations to talk to auxiliary firefighters about their individual, local station and state wide issues, not even QFES.
The plan for 2015 includes many more station visits.
Contact the state office if you would like to organise someone to discuss what the union is doing with members and potential members in a visit to your station.
Station visits can be done in person, via teleconference or via Skype.
The station visits can be done on training nights, or another night as arranged. If we haven’t seen you, we hope to see you in 2015!
Auxiliaries are represented on the state committee of management of the union and there is a standing agenda item for an auxiliary update to be given at every union executive meeting.
You can contact the state office at any time to discuss membership, or any other matter affecting your employment.
The UFUQ has an industrial officer dedicated to assisting auxiliaries with all employment related matters, so if you have a work related question, contact the state office and you will receive the appropriate assistance.