SDA MID-YEAR REPORT CARD 2022
In the first six months of 2022, the SDA has continued to focus our energy on the core issues affecting SDA members such as the Annual Wage Review, working conditions, solving members’ problems, penalty rates, Shop Steward and Delegate training, our on-going ‘No One Deserves A Serve campaign’, workers’ compensation and superannuation.
Annual Wage Review
The Fair Work Commission handed down their Annual Wage Review decision on June 15.
As of July 1, workers on modern awards, such as the General Retail Industry Award (GRIA) or Fast Food Industry Award (FFIA), received a $40 per week increase for workers earning up to $869.60 per week and a 4.6% increase to rates above that.
The SDA will send updates to members about how your pay rise will apply and provide your new rates of pay specific to your Award or Agreement.
This pay rise was won by SDA members and the union movement as we put forward strong arguments to the Annual Wage Review – thank you for your support.
When employer groups argued for little or no increases as well as postponing any increase, we campaigned out in stores and in the community for a fair increase without delay. Cost of living pressures are here now so the increase shouldn’t be delayed for retail and fast-food workers – the SDA won this argument.
Almost 10,000 SDA members responded to our survey which helped inform our submission to the Fair Work Commission ahead of this decision and a further 4,000 signed up to support the campaign.
This is a much needed increase for millions of workers who have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic.
As the cost of living continues to go up, the SDA will continue our work for fair and decent pay rises.
Negotiations have commenced for the new Coles DC Enterprise Agreement which is being conducted in the knowledge that Coles is going down the path of automation. As always, members will be continually informed on the progress of these discussions and will ultimately vote on whether the negotiated package is acceptable or not.
We have also had meetings with our Big W Shop Stewards around Australia and the union’s log of claims is being finalised. I am also confident that the Woolworths retail negotiations will commence shortly and the Target retail agreement negotiations are under way.
In each set of negotiations, our objective will be to achieve the best possible wages and working conditions for our members under the security of an SDA Enterprise Agreement.
Shop Steward & Delegate Training
It is fair to say that COVID-19 played havoc with our training over the last two years. In 2022, our Stewards and Delegates have attended SDA training in record numbers.
Every day, our Shop Stewards and Delegates are informing and educating members about their rights and are also very active in helping members sort out their issues and problems through the grievance procedure.
There is no doubt that SDA Shop Stewards and Delegates are the unsung heroes of the SDA.
Underpayments in our industries
It is only fair and proper that workers receive their correct pay and entitlements. Unfortunately, this has not always been the case and in recent times, massive underpayments have been highlighted in the media.
Large retailers such as Coles and Woolworths Ltd have confirmed errors and are still in the process of working out the amount of backpay past and present employees are owed.
Over the past five years, the SDA has consistently called for payroll reviews to ensure that members are receiving their correct entitlements.
As a result of the recent Woolworths payroll review, Woolworths Ltd have admitted underpayments in the areas of long service leave payments, issues concerning roster patterns for Sunday workers, consecutive days off, crib breaks and meal allowances.
Woolworths has finalised its review and is making back payments to all impacted employees, including applicable superannuation and interest.
The SDA has also been active in seeking and winning underpayments for our members in smaller companies. We have recently secured over $146,000 for six members who worked for an independent supermarket in Central Queensland. Obtaining the money was not easy. We engaged counsel to overcome the complicated legal hurdles and to the relief of our members, we secured their backpay.
As always, the SDA will continue to work hard to ensure full compliance by employers when it comes to your wages and conditions.
No One Deserves a Serve
I find it interesting that since the SDA started our successful No One Deserves A Serve Campaign some four years ago, other industries have now jumped on board. I have seen similar campaigns are now being conducted in various public service departments, doctor surgeries, banks, refuse and recycling centres, post offices and insurance companies.
The SDA has always stated that this campaign would be on-going because we are continually dealing with obnoxious customers in our shops and our fast food outlets. One such incident recently ended up in the Magistrate’s Court. There is no doubt that Magistrates need to send a strong message to such offenders that it is not okay to spit on hard-working SDA members. After all, it costs nothing to treat retail and fast food workers with respect.
The superannuation guarantee was raised from 10% to 10.5% as of 1 July 2022. This is a welcome improvement but the Superannuation Guarantee Levy needs to increase to 12% in the short term and increase to 15.4% in the medium term. After all, if it is good enough for politicians to receive 15.4%, it is good enough for SDA members.
The SDA continues to fight for SDA members every day whether it is in the Fair Work Commission or individual workplaces.
I am very proud to lead an organisation that fights for the rights of SDA members every day.
I have every confidence that the second half of 2022 will be as good as the first half knowing that I have a committed team of SDA officials, Shop Stewards and Delegates supporting me.