As you know, your HSU representatives have been pursuing a claim for shoe allowance for Food Services staff employed by HealthShare.
Partly, this is due to the fact that HealthShare has itself admitted that 900 (out of 5000) Food Services staff have been receiving the shoe allowance for some time.
In addition to the obvious issue of equity, there was also a concern that HealthShare may seek to remove the allowance from the 900 staff who had already been receiving it.
Following both proceedings in the Industrial Relations Commission (IRC) and after HSU Food Services members conducted protest action around the state last week, HealthShare management have now approached the HSU with an initial offer to resolve the dispute.
That offer includes:
A guarantee that all Food Services staff currently getting the allowance will keep it, now and into the future.
An indication of willingness to change the shoe policy to remove some restrictions on the type and colour of shoes that staff are allowed to wear (though the shoes would still need to be non-absorbent and non-slip).
Your HSU representatives have not provided a response to the offer but have raised some additional questions/concerns with HealthShare CEO:
What changes to the shoe policy are actually being proposed, and how will it benefit HSU members?
The issue of staff working together with some staff receiving it, some staff not, is an issue of major concern.
Are staff being provided with proper footwear in wet areas (e.g. gumboots) as required?
As with any issue, most important is feedback from HSU members.
Your local HSU Organiser will be visiting workplaces over the coming week and you can provide feedback to them or your workplace delegate.
You can also provide feedback directly by emailing email@example.com using subject line Food Services Shoe Allowance. Please send any feedback by close of business, Friday 13 November.
Regardless of the outcome of this dispute, it is clear that allowances across the sector need to be fixed.
That is why your union is campaigning so hard to get the government to renegotiate the Awards and fix this mess.
We can only run and win big disputes if we have strong union membership. Encourage your workmates to join online at www.hsu.asn.au/join or call 1300 478 679.