QR redundancy packages popular
MORE than 660 QR National jobs will be made redundant from April 15 pending final consultation approval from unions later this week.
The voluntary redundancies are expected to commence next week with 53 Rockhampton rail workers already accepting the packages.
While the packages proved popular during the expression of interest period last month, Rail, Tram and Bus Union’s Central Queensland district organiser Craig Allen is hesitant to welcome the deal.
“The information in the public domain has not been fully consulted with the union,” Mr Allen said.
“We (the RTBU) have always said, during our anti-privatisation campaign, that privatisation would be bad for regional jobs, and this is the first stage in us being vindicated that cuts would come about.
“The community needs to continue to remember that the private sector’s first responsibility is to shareholders and to maximise share price.”
The approximate cost of the current voluntary redundancy program would be $50 million, according to QR National’s chief human resources officer John Stevens, and would provide a payback within 11 months.
Total cash payout of leave entitlements will be $75 million.
More than 920 expressions of interest were received from rail workers earlier this year.
The packages include a payment of three weeks’ pay for each year of service for permanent employees with five or more years’ service, capped at 104 weeks’ pay.
Mr Allen said the number of Central Queensland rail workers accepting the redundancies would not be known until QR National meets with unions later this week.