Campbell Newman promises that when he is Premier: "The LNP has made clear commitments to work with Queensland’s hard working and dedicated public servants particularly we’ve promised no forced redundancies and we will not continue Labor’s unfair and arbitrary 2.5% wages cap..." (27 February — Youtube)
Campbell Newman is elected Premier of Queensland in a landslide.
Negotiations for a new Core agreement begin. Union members had put a reasonable list of claims together and started the process in good faith. In July 2012 the Newman government rushes laws through Parliament to take away job security, leading to mass sackings of public servants.
Negotiations break down – union members would not accept the ridiculous cuts to conditions being proposed. Members offered to meet with the Premier and he refused.
The whole negotiation is sent to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission (QIRC) as the independent umpire to arbitrate.
The government have one last crack at getting a dodgy deal through by asking all public servants to vote on their cuts to conditions offer. The government’s offer is rejected by over 70% of those voting. The government’s ballot has set the whole process back 3 months.
Together negotiators request a pay rise be paid to public servants while the arbitration takes place. The government refuses to pay and begins a long series of legal arguments over whether one can be granted by the Commission.
24 June 2013
In the first set of legal argument Together members win! The President of Industrial Court says the Commission should be able to give an interim wage increase.
5 July 2013
STOP! The government steps in and appeals the decision of the Industrial Court to the Supreme Court of Queensland, saying the Industrial Court didn’t have jurisdiction. A ridiculous next step to stop public servants getting a fair go, yet again.
10 July 2013
Government then argues that the whole arbitration cannot proceed until the Supreme Court case is over. Another delay. This is contested by Together.
23 July 2013
Government writes to Together to request discussions of a settlement based on a 2.2% wage increase. Meetings take place over the following days.
26 July 2013
After 5:00 pm on Friday afternoon, Public Service Commission chief Ian Maynard writes to Together Secretary Alex Scott, offering an agreement with 2.2% dated from 1 July 2013. The timeframe for acceptance is 9:00 am Monday morning. Alex responds letting him know that union members must vote on all offers and this is not enough time but members could vote with a time extension. Maynard says they can’t wait 2 weeks for a member vote.
30-31 July 2013
Instead PSC launch an informal online "survey" of employees on whether to accept a 2.2% wage increase from 1 July 2013 or continue with the arbitration.
Discussions between PSC and union representatives happen in the Commission, with progress being made. PSC representatives advise that they will need to consider some parts of a potential new offer. On the afternoon of 31 July, the PSC suddenly advise that all matters discussed are withdrawn, stopping again any chance of a fair deal and a fair vote of public servants.
PSC put forward an "offer" of 2.2% wage rise, with significant cuts to working conditions, dated from 1 April 2013, conditional on immediate acceptance by the union office without balloting of members. This was an offer already rejected by members in ballots.
1 August 2013
The PSC’s staff survey closes. 19,590 employees voted (approximately 35% of total employees covered by the agreement). 54% vote NO to the "offer" that doesn’t address critical issues and is not fair.
Together members announce they will stand strong and rally outside Parliament House to protest an over 40% wage increase being given to politicans while they go without a fair deal.
2 August 2013
Ian Maynard meets with union delegates, Together Secretary Alex Scott and the QIRC’s Commissioner Fisher. Maynard reiterates the 2.2% offer, conditional on acceptance by the Core delegates committee. Delegates stand firm and outline they do not have the authority to do this and will instead hold a ballot of members.
Late on Friday afternoon, the PSC file for orders in the Commission. They want: a ballot of employees, to ban any ballot of union members on the same, forced removal of the material that refers to politicians’ pay increases from the Together website, and a gag on any "adverse public comment" by Together officials or the Together office about the government’s offer. An urgent conference is held before the QIRC, extending late into the night.
5 August 2013
Further conference before the QIRC is held.
6 August 2013
QIRC’s decision is released rejecting the PSC’s application. Thousands of union members rally outside Parliament House in support of fair wages and in opposition to politicians’ pay increase. The politicians concede and send their wage rise to the remuneration tribunal.
12 August 2013
Together ballot of members in relation to the offer is launched.
20 August 2013
Again, the Government try and delay fair process and a fair hearing for public servants arguing in the Commission that no dates should be scheduled for the Core arbitration prior to the Supreme Court hearing on an interim wages increase.
6 September 2013
Together ballot of members closes. Outcome of ballot is 87% voting in favour of continuing in arbitration. Members always decide as a union group.
13 September 2013
The Commission announces that the arbitration cannot proceed until after the Supreme Court hearing in December.
15 October 2013
The Governments Independent Remuneration Tribunal for Members of Parliament awards them a backdated pay increase to August 2011 and a 3.02% wage increase backdated to 1 July 2013, as well as reclassifications for their positions.
17 October 2013
Government rush through legislation trying to firm up their case for the Supreme Court. A complete act of dishonesty and abuse of power.
11 December 2013
Following a concerted campaign by Together members signing Christmas cards to demand a pay increase before Christmas and days before the hearing at the Supreme Court of the government’s own legal appeal, the Premier does a u-turn and implements a pay increase. His increase is 2.2%, dating only from 1 December, and still lower than his own pay increase of 3% dating to 1 July. Together members resolve to continue the arbitration and the Supreme Court hearing.
13 December 2013
Supreme Court hearing. Together members put their case.
6 June 2014
Supreme Court issues their decision. Together members win! The QIRC should have been able to award an interim wage increase and the Government was wrong to seek to delay it.
11 June 2014
Together launches the Fair Pay for All petition to the Premier to "stop delaying, start paying." The campaign for Fair Pay For All continues.