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MEDIA RELEASE: Telstra Unions welcome VIC Premier's push for Commonwealth intervention on Telstra jobs apocalypse


Unions representing Telstra workers have welcomed Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews push for the Turnbull Government to co-ordinate a national response to save 9,500 jobs slated to be axed by Telstra.

The Australian Council of Trade Unions, along with the Unions that represent the majority of Telstra’s workforce, the Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union and the Community and Public Sector Union, said it was not too late to find alternatives to last week’s announcement that would see nearly a third of Telstra’s workforce lose their jobs.

Premier Andrews today wrote to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, outlining the disproportionate impact the cuts will have on Victoria due to a third of Telstra’s workforce being based in the state, and calling for national leadership on the issue.

CPSU Deputy National President Rupert Evans welcomed the Victorian Government intervention, saying the union was ready and willing to work with the Federal Government to save as many Telstra jobs as possible.

“It’s simply not good enough for politicians to express shock and concern when workers and their communities suffer devastating cuts, instead they must use the full powers at their disposal to save these jobs,” Mr Evans said.

“Telstra workers have been buoyed by the Victorian Premier’s intervention, and as their representatives we stand ready and willing to work with State and Federal Government’s to develop alternatives that can protect jobs and services.

“If major employers like Telstra continue to get away with failing to plan for the future then trying to solve their problems by slashing jobs and services, it will have a devastating impact across entire economy.”

CEPU National President Shane Murphy said: “This job purge is a national disgrace and the Federal Government must intervene.”

“Cutting the Telstra workforce by almost a third will leave thousands of workers out of a job and have a significant impact on Telstra’s ability to deliver for consumers across the nation.

“This is one of our nation's largest job cuts in corporate history, and Australian workers and families are counting this Government to step up and intervene.

“We don’t want sympathy, we want tangible actions from governments at all levels.”

ACTU Secretary Sally McManus said: “Major corporations like Telstra have a responsibility to the people who work for them, their families and their communities. We will not accept mass sackings. Telstra must manage change by training, re-skilling and redeploying employees.

“Michaelia Cash and Mitch Fifield have a responsibility to Telstra employees and working Australians to step in and fix this mess. They must take up the proposal that has been put to them by the Victorian state government and work with Telstra employees, their unions and other governments to stop this mass sacking.

“People working at Telstra need their elected representatives in Canberra to take action and save their jobs.”

Media contact: Amelia Brock 0430 187 161

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