Spotless has issued a (8 September) statement rejecting United Voice’s claims that Melbourne Airport could be left unclean owing to potential strike action. ‘Any industrial action that might take place on the weekend starting Friday 9 September 2011 will have no impact on cleaning activities at Melbourne Airport,’ said Spotless.
The company said its ‘cleaners are being offered a four per cent wage increase each year that is above the Modern Award rate. Spotless believes that in the current economic environment this is a fair deal.
‘Many Spotless cleaners earn more than $20 an hour because of the award’s penalty structures. Spotless is proud of its record in passing on the full benefit of the modern award conditions and providing security of employment and the guarantee of entitlements to all its employees.
‘Spotless also pays annual parking fees on behalf of its Melbourne airport based employees.
‘Spotless currently employs about 130 cleaners at Melbourne Airport. The contractor pointed out that many of the airport staff were offered secure employment with Spotless when the former Reflections cleaning company failed and ceased trading in early 2010.
‘The United Voice union has issued incorrect and misleading information about the negotiation for conditions for Melbourne Airport staff.
‘Spotless cleaners deserve more respect than this. The facts are:
*Employees received a 3.4 per cent increase in July this year and Spotless has offered to increase it to four per cent;
*Spotless has agreed to a four per cent year on year pay increase for the remainder of the agreement;
*Spotless already pays for staff parking;
*Negotiations started in June, not April as claimed by United Voice; and
*Less than half of the total staff voted in favour of taking action.
‘The four per cent year on year wage increases are on top of existing award conditions include shift, weekend, overtime and public holiday penalties. In the current economic environment, this is a very generous offer that other employers are not able to offer.
‘Importantly, Spotless abides by the decisions handed down by the workplace relations umpire, Fair Work Australia.’
According to Spotless, many of its cleaners earn more than $20 an hour because of the award’s penalty structures. ‘Spotless is proud of its record in passing on the full benefit of the modern award conditions and providing security of employment and the guarantee of entitlements to all its employees.
‘Sadly, those benefits are not enjoyed by many cleaners in Australia who are employed by unscrupulous contractors who do not pay the award and undercut Spotless when tendering for contracts.
‘Spotless will ensure that arrangements are in place to maintain the highest cleaning standards at Melbourne Airport and there will no disruption to passengers or visitors.’