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Sweet Victory for AWU Members at MSF Sugar

June 20, 2019

The Australian Workers’ Union (AWU) says it’s a sweet victory for members at MSF Sugar Maryborough after securing a new Agreement following an eighteen-month long battle.

After an aggressive move last year by MSF Sugar in Maryborough to terminate their Enterprise Agreement and cut sugar workers’ pay by as much as $20,000 a year, members stood together to fight back for a fair go and this week voted to approve a new enterprise agreement that delivers significant pay increases and job security protections.

The new Agreement comes after the AWU successfully blocked MSF Sugar from terminating their Agreement in the Fair Work Commission last year in a rare win for Unions against the dodgy tactic.

Acting AWU Central District Secretary Tony Beers said that the win was a credit to the union’s members who fought back against a desperate measure to terminate their Agreement and cut their pay and conditions.

“In a fight lasting over eighteen months, AWU members have had success by standing shoulder to shoulder against MSF Sugar’s plans to cut wages and conditions,” Tony said.

“While it’s disappointing that the company let it get to this stage and dragged it out for this long, our members have still managed to achieve a great outcome.”

“Terminating the Agreement would have been a devastating outcome for the MSF workforce who faced the potential of huge cuts to their pay and conditions if it went through.

Tony Beers said the union’s members had not only secured fair wages, but also secure jobs.

“MAS Sugar had threatened to bring in contract labour-hire workers to replace the seasonal workforce, which would have meant a loss of secure jobs for Maryborough locals.

“This would have been a bad outcome for the workers and their families, and the broader community.”

AWU members not only fought off the massive cut to their wages, by standing together they have achieved a 6.5% wage increase and better work-life balance conditions.

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