January 27, 2018

The TWU have kicked-off 2018 with two significant wins in the Victorian Small Business Commission, in both cases we fought managerial decisions to terminate members’ without appropriate notice.

The results meant these members can look forward to a more secure and better future. 

Case 1  – Long-term Owner Driver Member Bruce Taylor was represented at a mediation by Branch Industrial Officer and Senior Organiser Mick Wirrick. Bruce had worked consistently for the same organisation for 17 years and was terminated without the appropriate Notice Period.

The Mediation bought about a result that was acceptable to Bruce and was signed off in a Deed that contained confidentiality terms. That being the case we cannot provide the detail. Bruce was able to sell his truck and is now going to retire. Bruce would have kept working if the Organisation had not moved against him. He sent the kind words below after the matter was settled:

“Hi Mick – I would like to let you know how much I appreciate the help that both you and (Industrial Officer) Cassidy Guyett gave us to achieve the outcome that we got yesterday. It was nothing short of fantastic and Carol and I both wish you and Cassidy all the best in the future. Kind Regards, Bruce.” 


Case 2 – Mark Phillips, a 31-year TWU member from Toll, was represented in the Small Business Commission on 16 January 2018 by Branch Assistant Secretary Chris Fennell, Industrial Officer Cassidy Guyett and Ports Organiser Mem Suleyman.

On 13 April 2016, this member was involved in a serious workplace accident. As a result of the accident, Toll terminated its engagement with Mark without notice.  The decision was disputed by both the TWU and Mark.

Following unsuccessful discussions with Toll, a dispute was taken to the Small Business Commission. An agreement was reached at mediation which Mark was very happy with, allowing him to move on with his career in transport as an owner driver.


TWU (Vic/Tas Branch) Secretary John Berger said the pleasing Commission results not only helped the individual members involved but would also act as precedents that may assist other members in the future.

“The experience of our organisers is invaluable for members. Taking sometimes complicated industrial issues to a commission or tribunal can actually be the easy part, being able to confidently navigate the matter through the process against experienced company lawyers and come through with a win for members is a skill that can only be learnt through years of practice,” John said.

“It also goes to show that the union always has the backs of members.”






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