Breakthrough in Negotiations

Posted April 15, 2014

We’ve finally had a breakthrough in negotiations.

After days of negotiations with the Government, we’ve finally got an agreement that we are happy to put to you and your colleagues to vote on.

This is a huge moment in the campaign – and it’s all thanks to your commitment.

This time last week, the Government was completely ruling out further negotiations and as a result, doctors were forced into the unfortunate position of planning for resignations.

But the pressure you put on the Government to return to the negotiating table worked, and the Keep Our Doctors Taskforce spent long days on Thursday and Friday and over the weekend in intense discussions.

PLEASE NOTE: Once we have final documents for you to review and a full summary of changes, all Together members will be asked to vote on whether or not you believe that your major concerns are dealt with (ACCEPT) or if you would be prepared to continue the campaign until all your concerns are addressed (REJECT). The position of Together on the Taskforce and in the campaign will be determined by a majority vote of members.

A quick run down - what has come out of the negotiations is an altered contract which includes the following key elements:

  • A robust and binding dispute resolution process,
  • A robust and binding unfair dismissal process,
  • The reissuing of the contract as one document, which means there is no addendum,
  • The removal of words profitability, viability and reputation from the termination clause,
  • The choice of 3 or 6 months notice period (for resignation),
  • HHSs to provide for current clinical support time arrangements – negotiate this as a clause in your contract,
  • A guarantee that translated option A benefits will be carried with you to a different HHS,
  • The ability to decline a transfer if reasonable grounds exist,
  • The ability to decline a shift roster if reasonable grounds exist,
  • You can only be directed to take Professional Development Leave by your manager to address or improve performance issues,
  • Intellectual property rights claimed by QH to only be related to your actual duties for the employer,
  • A guarantee that contract conditions cannot be changed negatively,
  • Improvement in wages and certain allowances can be arbitrated every 3 years, but there will be no real collective bargaining for anything else,
  • Doctors seeking improvements in their conditions need to go through an advisory committee and the decision is ultimately up to the Director-General,
  • Additional time to consider the new contract document and meet with your LHHS or Departmental manager with a new deadline of 31 May.

“Pineapple”
Wednesday evening (16 April) will be your opportunity to hear the detail of the proposal and ask any questions. A mass meeting will be held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre at 7pm on Wednesday. If you can’t make it in person, make sure you tune in via the Webinar. Click here for further details. 

If you would like to ask a question at the meeting, please click here

Following the meeting on Wednesday, union members will have the opportunity to formally vote on whether to accept the contracts via an official ballot process.

Congratulations on getting to this point. The fact that we have come this far is a testament to your commitment to the public health system and the people of Queensland.

Nothing is guaranteed until you and your colleagues vote on the contracts, but thank you for your support in getting this far. We have been limited in what we could say while we were in negotiations, but we are now pleased to be able to discuss the details with you.

Hope to see you at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on Wednesday.

The Keep Our Doctors campaign Team

This is a huge moment in the campaign – and it’s all thanks to your commitment.

This time last week, the Government was completely ruling out further negotiations and as a result, doctors were forced into the unfortunate position of planning for resignations.

But the pressure you put on the Government to return to the negotiating table worked, and the Keep Our Doctors Taskforce spent long days on Thursday and Friday and over the weekend in intense discussions.

PLEASE NOTE: Once we have final documents for you to review and a full summary of changes, all Together members will be asked to vote on whether or not you believe that your major concerns are dealt with (ACCEPT) or if you would be prepared to continue the campaign until all your concerns are addressed (REJECT). The position of Together on the Taskforce and in the campaign will be determined by a majority vote of members.

A quick run down - what has come out of the negotiations is an altered contract which includes the following key elements:

  • A robust and binding dispute resolution process,
  • A robust and binding unfair dismissal process,
  • The reissuing of the contract as one document, which means there is no addendum,
  • The removal of words profitability, viability and reputation from the termination clause,
  • The choice of 3 or 6 months notice period (for resignation),
  • HHSs to provide for current clinical support time arrangements – negotiate this as a clause in your contract,
  • A guarantee that translated option A benefits will be carried with you to a different HHS,
  • The ability to decline a transfer if reasonable grounds exist,
  • The ability to decline a shift roster if reasonable grounds exist,
  • You can only be directed to take Professional Development Leave by your manager to address or improve performance issues,
  • Intellectual property rights claimed by QH to only be related to your actual duties for the employer,
  • A guarantee that contract conditions cannot be changed negatively,
  • Improvement in wages and certain allowances can be arbitrated every 3 years, but there will be no real collective bargaining for anything else,
  • Doctors seeking improvements in their conditions need to go through an advisory committee and the decision is ultimately up to the Director-General,
  • Additional time to consider the new contract document and meet with your LHHS or Departmental manager with a new deadline of 31 May.

“Pineapple”
Wednesday evening (16 April) will be your opportunity to hear the detail of the proposal and ask any questions. A mass meeting will be held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre at 7pm on Wednesday. If you can’t make it in person, make sure you tune in via the Webinar. Click here for further details. 

If you would like to ask a question at the meeting, please click here

Following the meeting on Wednesday, union members will have the opportunity to formally vote on whether to accept the contracts via an official ballot process.

Congratulations on getting to this point. The fact that we have come this far is a testament to your commitment to the public health system and the people of Queensland.

Nothing is guaranteed until you and your colleagues vote on the contracts, but thank you for your support in getting this far. We have been limited in what we could say while we were in negotiations, but we are now pleased to be able to discuss the details with you.

Hope to see you at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on Wednesday.

The Keep Our Doctors Team