28th July, 2023
Ambulance Victoria Enterprise Bargaining Update 008 – AV need bargaining sabbatical
To date we have had thirty-five meetings with Ambulance Victoria (AV) to negotiate a new agreement to replace the Ambulance Victoria Enterprise Agreement 2020.
Yesterday’s meeting was another disappointing one with a number of key claims rejected by AV. This includes our claim for minimum safe staffing in our communications centres.
2. Minimum staffing levels responsible for each individual SECC at any given time to include One (1) Duty Manager, two (2) Communication Support Paramedics, two (2) Clinicians, and (1) Communications Administrative Support officer.
While the purpose of this claim is for improving resourcing and workload in the communications centres, it is also to provide a safe minimum amount of staff are available for crews on road to be able to consult regarding clinical matters, downgrades of cases, approach to occupational violence scenes, end of shift management, meal break management and welfare support.
Despite BalSECC being reduced to a single DM on Wednesday night 26 July 2023, with no CSP or Clinician, AV does not support prescribed staffing levels in the New Agreement.
AV have also rejected our claim for an uplift to MICA wages to build an appropriate relativity between ALS.
Further AV have advised the unions that they need more time (a 4 week pause on negotiations) to complete work on their alternative models and options.
The VAU successfully sought a 12 month renegotiation clause in the last round of negotiations in order to prevent unnecessary delays. However nearly seven months into bargaining, two meetings per week, it seems that the dog keeps eating their homework. The VAU will continue to bargain in good faith, however there is little utility until AV have completed the work they need to do.
The current Agreement expires in 186 days and if we have not reached in-principle agreement then we will begin the process of making a protected action ballot order. Only VAU members who have nominated the VAU as their bargaining representative will be able to take protected industrial action. Currently 79.64% of the AV workforce will be able to take industrial action.
Make sure you nominate the VAU as your bargaining rep if you haven’t already. Please contact the VAU using the contact form for information on how you can do this.