Rail Tram and Bus Union Queensland Branch
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Unplanned Absenteeism

31 August 2012

This week the RTBU received numerous phone calls requesting Union assistance to attend performance improvement plan meetings on the basis that Queensland Rail considered that there were excessive and/or pattern forming incidents in respect of absenteeism. Given this was occurring in an Organisation that has at least a partial freeze on employment in place along with the indications the State Government is seeking to reduce the employment in Queensland Rail, the RTBU was concerned about what was behind your employer’s sudden rush of blood in respect to this matter.

It emerged from RTBU reps attending some of these meetings that our suspicions of an alternative agenda may be valid, particularly supported by what Queensland Rail middle management involved in this process considered constituted excessive or pattern forming unplanned absenteeism.

As a result of these developments the RTBU sought an urgent meeting with Human Resources and Industrial Relations representatives to discuss our concerns. As a result, I am pleased to advise that all planned meetings in the Customer area of the Business that involve the implementation of performance plans for unplanned absenteeism have been placed on hold and a review is currently being conducted by Senior Human Resources management. The RTBU will be advised of the outcome of this review when finalised and will advise members further at that point.

In the meantime, all members within Queensland Rail as a whole should be cautious about participating in any such processes and ensure you contact your workplace Delegate/Organiser if you are approached by your Manager to discuss or hold meetings based on unplanned absenteeism.

Owen Doogan
Branch Secretary