Australian Services Union (ASU) members at Melbourne’s Women’s Health West (WHW) took protected industrial action and walked off the job on November 29 to protest their employer’s actions in relation to stalled enterprise bargaining negotiations.
WHW is a not-for-profit organisation that provides a range of domestic violence and women’s health services to the community. The industrial action took place during the global “16 Days of Activism” campaign held from November 25 to December 10, which focuses on eliminating gender-based violence against women and girls.
According to ASU organiser Kristy-Lee Tyrrell, members had been negotiating with their employer for close to two years for a new Enterprise Bargaining Agreement (EBA), when WHW management suddenly decided to sidestep union members and put forward a draft agreement to be voted on in a secret ballot. Tyrell told Green Left Weekly that WHW management have refused to send the EBA document they expect staff to vote on to the union for review.
Tyrell said: “ASU members at Women’s Health West work very hard helping women experiencing family violence and other issues. All they are asking is that management at Women’s Health West continue to meet with them around a fair enterprise agreement.”