On 31 October, the AFPA received the new Non-APS Bargaining – Government Parameters, which have direct implications on bargaining for the new Enterprise Agreement.
The AFPA is extremely disappointed and frustrated that the Australian Public Service Commission is dictating the conditions under which the AFPA can bargain for its members, in direct contradiction to the principles of “good-faith bargaining”. We strongly oppose the imposition of such stringent requirements and are actively working to find a means by which we can secure the pay and conditions members deserve.
The parameters on specific conditions impose barriers and make it impossible to bargain for any improved working conditions for members without an exemption to the Public Sector Workplace Relations Policy 2023. The new parameters divide proposed amendments to enterprise agreements into essentially two categories: Category 1 terms, which include the APS common conditions and other terms such as pay increases fixed by the APSC, and Category 2 terms, which are any other terms not covered by Category 1. Any proposed changes to enterprise agreements that fall under Category 2 require an exemption from the policy (which would only be considered in exceptional circumstances). Most of the AFPA’s priority log of claims falls under Category 2.
Of relevance to the current bargaining, key bargaining claims of the AFPA that would need exemptions include:
- any pay offer of more than 4%, 3.8% and 3.4% over the three-year term,
- any increase to superannuation,
- the introduction of any new allowance or an increase to an existing allowance above the general salary increases,
- changes to classification structures with a material new cost,
- enhancement of redundancy provisions, and
- reducing the qualifying period for the Higher Duties Allowance to less than two working weeks.
The AFPA and the AFP cannot sit idly by and allow the bargaining for a new Enterprise Agreement to be stymied by a government policy that does not take into acknowledge or appreciate the special role AFP members perform in protecting and serving the greater community and will leave the AFP as one of the lowest paid police forces in Australia.
The AFPA is prepared to stand up and fight for the better pay and conditions you deserve and will continue to push for the ability to genuinely bargain for a new Enterprise Agreement for all members without our hands tied behind our backs.
THE HONEST APPROACH IS THE BEST APPROACH
The AFPA is here to help, but we can only help if you allow us to! As you are aware, PRS investigations, stand downs, or any other type of formal investigation against an AFP member can be a stressing and trying time. The AFPA understands. There are always two sides to every story, and it’s our job to make sure that your side is heard.
That is why we always approach these situations with an ‘Honesty First’ approach. As an AFPA member, you are protected by strict confidentiality between yourself and our Industrial Officers. As such, you can rest assured that the advice provided to you is judgement-free, tailored to your situation, and forthright. That is why if you are seeking AFPA assistance, to enable us to provide you with the best advice we request you provide us with all the information as soon as you contact us. The AFPA has seen and heard it all, so please do not feel embarrassed or ashamed when seeking our assistance and advice.
So, when seeking the AFPA’s assistance, please, be upfront and honest! This will provide us with the best foundation to be as effective as we can to resolve your matter!