Qantas urged to withdraw application to terminate agreement with flight attendants

Move would 'cut wages by almost half for some staff'

Qantas urged to withdraw application to terminate agreement with flight attendants

Qantas recently announced it had filed a Fair Work Commission application to terminate its employee enterprise agreement with its international flight attendants, a move that “would cut wages by almost half for some staff,” the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) said.

According to a 9News report, the current agreement states that the “Qantas International crew is limited to working on a specific model of aircraft: Airbus A330s only, or on Airbus A380s and Boeing 787s only.” Qantas has referred to the agreement as “restrictive and outdated.”

Meanwhile, the ACTU said the flight attendants have “made enormous sacrifices,” adding they “endured 20 months of standdowns since the start of the pandemic.” ACTU argued that Qantas “has received billions in public money over the course of the pandemic, including $2 billion in 2021 alone,” so the public “rightly expects” that Qantas would “safeguard the jobs of [its] employees.”

“Qantas flight attendants volunteered to serve on flights to bring stranded Australians home before vaccines were widely available. They, like so many other frontline workers, are heroes of this pandemic and deserve fair pay and conditions and their employer’s respect and recognition,” ACTU President Michele O’Neil said in a media release.

“Qantas has received billions in taxpayer funds over the last two years. Now they are threatening workers to try and force through a deal, slash wages and keep more of our money for themselves,” O’Neil added.

The application comes after several months of negotiations with the Flight Attendants' Association of Australia (FAAA) to reach the current agreement.

9News’ report noted that Qantas’ application to end the agreement marks the “first time [it has done so] in its history.”

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