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Post's Authorised Holiday shame

Members would be well aware by now of Australia Post’s unilateral change to the Authorised Holiday. Hiding behind the Principal Determination, made under the authority of the Australian Postal Corporation Act, they tore away what has traditionally been your only opportunity to spend a little additional time with friends and loved ones following the busiest time of year.

And they weren’t happy slapping you in the face just once. They’ve done it again.

Australia Post have announced that this year’s Authorised Holiday will fall on Wednesday 19 August. Members who previously elected to receive the Authorised Holiday as an additional annual leave day (in addition to 17.5% leave loading for the day) will automatically have this year’s additional day credited on 5 August.

The contempt for employees, shown by this executive group, knows no bounds.

A Wednesday – right in the middle of the week. It was only last year when they committed to at least providing the day on a Monday or Friday. This ultimate hypocritical insult came just a day after sending heartfelt email messages to employees stressing that you are entitled to ‘respect’ from the public. How about a little bit of respect from the management group?

This unfair change comes as members continue to work through the worst health crisis our globe has seen in 100 years where you are not only putting yourselves and your families at risk, but continue to be subjected to ongoing abuse from the public due to the reduction in services this executive group is responsible for.

It is clear that this executive group, who all enjoy as much time off as they like with their loved ones over Christmas, have little respect for the employees who have gone above and beyond to keep our communities connected, and the company profitable, during the emerging health crisis.

Whilst distributing glossy SIBs ‘thanking’ employees, the actions that follow are a slap in the face to essential workers putting in the hard yards yard during the pandemic. Their words would be much more believable if they were followed up by actions that demonstrated their gratitude. Ensuring the Authorised Holiday remained to at least fall on a Monday or a Friday would be a start.

Union position

Our position has not changed – we do not believe the change to the Authorised Holiday is fair, or warranted.

We believe the traditional timing of the holiday provides, what is for many, the only opportunity for additional time with loved ones at an important time of the year where leave blackouts usually exist for operational employees.

And although they continue to claim that 23,000 employees prefer for the Authorised Holiday to occur this way, 78% of members who completed our EBA10 survey said otherwise. That’s why during the next round of bargaining, one of our key member claims will be the restoration of our traditional Authorised Holiday.

Members should prepare to dig in for the fight on this one, when EBA10 bargaining recommences next year.

Members can read National Secretary Greg Rayner’s letter to Australia Post regarding the matter by clicking here.

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