Rail Tram and Bus Union Queensland Branch
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Rail Passes: Interim protection as the campaign continues

Some weeks ago I advised Aurizon HR Management that regardless of the position of Queensland Rail and the State Government about the continuation of use of passes by members after 31 December 2013, and over and above the RTBUís endeavours to retain the passes indefinitely for those entitled to them, current Industrial Relations Legislation required Aurizon to continue to provide our members with these passes in 2014 if the current Enterprise Agreement was still in place.

It now appears almost certain that the replacement Enterprise Agreement will not be in place by then and since the RTBU secured the continuation of passes in this Agreement, like all other conditions in the Agreement, the passes policy continues to be legally enforceable after 31 December.

I am pleased to advise that Aurizon has reacted positively to this and at a recent meeting with the RTBU, Aurizon advised that in order to abide by this Agreement condition they had entered into commercial arrangements with Queensland Rail and the Department of Transport and Main Roads for them to accept expired passes between now and the implementation of a new Enterprise Agreement.

There are some technical aspects of the concession passes for dependents that may have to change in light of the new commercial arrangements, but when those details are ironed out, we will let you know. However, our understanding is that these details do not relate to withdrawal of their rights in respect of rail travel.

So for now, itís business as usual with the passes. If you are asked for your pass beyond 31 December this year, you will not be penalised in any way for holding an expired pass.

The campaign in respect of the maintenance of passes beyond the termination of this Agreement continues and the RTBU, along with a number of other Unions, has provided instructions to Solicitors and is presently awaiting the outcome of legal research being conducted by our lawyers in this respect.

Unity is Strength

Owen Doogan
State Secretary
Queensland Branch