Annual Leave Management Dispute
After many months the NTEU has now obtained a decision from Fair Work Australia regarding our dispute with the university over management of annual leave.
Deputy President Hamilton today issued his decision on the matters we raised and said:
1. In relation to the process of applying for annual leave and using EAL, all that is necessary to meet the requirements of the EBA is that you apply by 31 December in the year in which it accrues, to take leave that will consume your EAL. This means that you DO NOT have to use up your EAL by 31 December. But if you fail to make an application in time, you will be placed on annual leave from January until your accrual is reduced to 20 days (or pro rata equivalent).
2. In relation to the 30-day cap and its application pro rata to fractional employees, that the cap may be applied pro rata. Unfortunately we were unable to persuade the tribunal of our interpretation in this regard.
The NTEU advises you that you can consider any decisions you have taken until now based on information you had and change your plans should you wish, so long as your new plan still meets these requirements.
We do not know if the University will seek to discuss these matters with us or indeed what they will do to inform their staff globally or individually. Their failure to consult the NTEU over annual leave was also noted by the Deputy President, who went on to say that the issue was of sufficient significance as to bring into play the obligation under Clause 13 for the University to consult the NTEU about these matters. (Par 29 of his decision.)
The NTEU has always been of the view that the University has cynically sought to stampede its staff into using annual leave in advance of necessity. Whilst the looming budgetary difficulties would have been already of concern in May when the emails were issued by the employer, this in itself does not justify misinforming staff as the employer has done.
We are pleased to have obtained a degree of redress about this.
If you wish to read the Deputy President's decision you can download it below.
Room GO2A Bdg 19 Clayton Campus
Phone: 03 9905 4110
Fax: 03 9905 5746
Branch Industrial Organiser
Division Industrial Organiser