The Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union (AMWU) is disappointed but unsurprised by today’s High Court decision to grant special leave to Mondelez International and the Australian Government to appeal the decision of the Federal Court in Mondelez v AMWU.
That decision recognised shift workers entitlement to ten days paid personal leave as calculated by their normal hours of work, acknowledging that any other calculation would short change them.
The 12-hour days worked by Cadbury employees entitles them to 120 hours of paid personal leave per year. Mondelez argued that workers should only receive 76 hours of personal leave under the NES, based on 10 days of 7.6 hours work each.
The AMWU remain disappointed at the Government’s decision to support Mondelez’s attempt to cut personal leave entitlements from shift workers, supporting them at the Fair Work commission, Federal Court and now the High Court.
All shift workers will be watching this case very closely as their hard-fought personal leave entitlements will depend upon the outcome.
Quotes attributable to Paul Bastian, AMWU National Secretary
“This is an issue of fairness for workers rights across Australia, not just the Cadbury workers at the centre of this case. If you are a shift worker this decision affects you.
“If you’re working 12-hour shifts and need to take a sick day, then you should be paid for your normal hours of work, it’s as simple as that.
“It’s appalling to once again see the Morrison Government take the side of a profitable multinational company over some of the hardest working, lowest paid employees in this country. They should be on the side of workers, not trying to undercut the minimum standards that workers rely on.
“Australian workers have fought long and hard for their entitlements, and while we’re disappointed to have to continue to fight on this issue, it’s something we’re more than prepared to do. The AMWU, and our members, know what’s right and what’s fair, and we’re not asking for anything more than that."