The Fair Work Commission has approved a new Enterprise Agreement for Coles store team members, after 90% of team members participating in a February ballot voted in favour.
The two-year Agreement will come into effect from Monday 30 April 2018.
HRD contacted Coles for comment, and in the statement the supermarket chain said they thanked the Fair Work Commission for their endorsement of the Agreement.
“We believe the Agreement is a great outcome for our team members, provides certainty for the future and allows us to continue delivering great service, quality and value to our customers,” said the Coles spokesperson.
Moreover, the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association (SDA) national secretary Gerard Dwyer said the approval of the new Agreement was an excellent outcome for Coles workers and was consistent with their key priorities.
“This is an excellent outcome for Coles workers who will now have an Agreement which delivers pay rises for every worker, protects take home pay, improves penalty rates and secures hard won union conditions.
“With wage growth at historic lows across Australia, we’re pleased this new agreement has been approved and will deliver a July increase to Coles workers and pay rises for all over the life of the Agreement.”
The Agreement covers all wages-paid store team members and department managers, except those who work mostly in the meat department, and provides a range of benefits including:
• Being paid more than the Award at all times;
• Pay increases in July for each year of the Agreement;
• Protections around the take-home pay of current team members;
• A one-off payment of $475 (pro-rated for part-time team members), already paid in March;
• Higher penalty rates for more hours of the week;
• The right to request increased contract hours or to be made permanent;
• Additional benefits including a number that are not part of the Award, such as two days paid Domestic Violence Leave, paid Natural Disaster Leave and paid Emergency Services, Jury Service and Blood Donor Leave, and
• The ability for team members to choose their superannuation fund.
Dwyer added that right from the beginning of this process, Coles workers were very clear about what they wanted from a new Agreement.
“They did not want their take home pay cut, they wanted to keep the conditions that they had fought hard for over decades, and wanted pay rises for everyone,” he said.
“Now that the Commission has approved this Agreement, Coles workers across the country can look forward to better pay and hard won union conditions.
Dwyer said the decision is “fantastic news” for Coles workers across the country, who will now have an Agreement which delivers on all fronts.
“This is an Agreement which also preserves above Award leave conditions including superior parental leave, paid domestic violence leave, emergency services, defence and natural disaster leave.”