Keeping above the breadline

Win for workers at Tip Top.

The EBA dispute at Tip Top Bakeries in Dandenong has been resolved after a long campaign of industrial action and stoppages. 

Negotiations fell apart in early April of this year when the workers rejected the company’s claims to pay contractors under the award rates, changes to rosters which are currently only to be changed by agreement, payments for public holidays reduced from triple time to double time and a below inflation pay increase of 1.5%.

The major attack on the members was the changes to the shift rosters, because the current agreed cycle is a 7 day 24/7 roster that, with penalties rolled in, provides for a decent standard of living for the members from the AMWU and ETU. The return to a Monday to Friday roster with day, afternoon and night shift rosters would have effectively reduced the members take home pay by 38%.

After a long industrial campaign with support from the broader Union community, the public, politicians, and media, the company withdrew all of their aggressive claims and all of the original hard won terms have been kept.

As part of the settlement, backpay has been assured to April this year with all previous terms and conditions preserved and an above CPI increase of 2.5% each year for the next 3 years.

This dispute was not so much about a wages outcome but an aggressive attack on the ETU members' conditions. Credit is due to the members for wanting to fight to keep those entitlements for now and future generations. Special mention to our shop steward Wayne Bauman for keeping the members united during those cold mornings on the picket line.

"The workers united will never be defeated" calls out loud at Tip Top Dandenong.