Union welcomes orders from IRC
TOGETHER union has welcomed Industrial Relations Commission orders relating to strike action in Queensland prisons overnight.
Union secretary Alex Scott said on Friday the IRC had issued orders against correctional officers and the Department of Corrections.
"We think this is a welcome move that shows the strength of the IRC as an independent umpire that can resolve significant industrial disputes," he said.
Rockhampton and Mareeba prisons went into lock-down on Thursday night but the commission directed staff to return to work immediately late into the evening with skeleton staff left manning the jails.
Officers at Townsville, Woodford and Brisbane also walked off the job for a few hours but voted against further action overnight.
Maryborough correctional officers, unable to strike on Thursday due to internal issues, took strike action on Friday morning.
When they returned to work, they put an overtime ban in place which has now been removed.
Mr Scott said the decision to cut prison industries at numerous prisons from seven to five days a week exposed the government's lies on regional and frontline job cuts.
"The government is continuing its process of slash and burn without any regard to the impact this is having on regional services and regional jobs," he said.
"They need to understand the reaction from correctional officers is a direct result of their desire to announced changes and job cuts though the media.
"This dispute could have been avoided if the department had followed their legal obligations and consulted properly with the workforce."
Mr Scott said he expected 50 to 100 job losses, including regional jobs, and believed between 800 to 1000 correctional offers were involved in the stop-work action on Thursday and Friday.