Industrial action to impact students at Catholic schools in Wingham, Taree and Bulahdelah

Teachers will stop work this Thursday, November 2 at schools in Taree, Wingham and Bulahdelah. 

Industrial action will impact students at selected Catholic schools in the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle. Students attending St Joseph’s Primary School in Wingham, St Clare’s High School in Taree, and St Joseph’s Primary School in Bulahdelah will be affected by the stop work.

The Catholic Schools office today confirmed that not all schools will take part in the industrial action which is set to affect 35 of the 57 schools in the diocese until 12.30pm. The director of CSO Michael Slattery says the office has informed parents of children at the affected school of the planned industrial action.

We have told parents that all children at the affected schools will be supervised during the stop work as their safety is our number one priority.

Michael Slattery

“This industrial action is in part being driven by the Independent Education Union refusal to accept a decision handed down earlier this year by the Catholic Commission for Employment Relations about dispute resolution. 

“The CCER decided to reject the IEU’s call for independent arbitration for disputes to be included in the new enterprise agreement.

“Tony Farley, the executive director of the CCER, is on record as saying there is no need to include independent arbitration in the new enterprise agreement because the current process for resolving disputes has been in place for more than seven years, is working well to resolve disputes and is consistent with the Fair Work Act.”

However, the IEU asserts that without arbitration, in many cases there is no legal way for the member or members to achieve an outcome to the dispute, in other cases, the only remedy is an expensive case before a court.