Ichthys workers go on strike

AN ALLIANCE of workers employed by Monadelphous at the Inpex’s offshore FPSO went on strike over the weekend, protesting pay, working conditions, and calling for a new Enterprise Bargaining Agreement.
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Paul Hunt

Senior Journalist: Oil & Gas, Policy.

Paul Hunt
The strike was organised by the Maritime Union of Australia and the Australian Workers Union as a coordinated  partnership called the Offshore Alliance. 
Members of the unions went on strike on Saturday and Sunday under ‘protected action' giving them immunity under the Fair Work Commission. 
The Offshore Alliance is calling for higher wages, better working conditions and job security. 
It also hold concerns that Monadelphous is standing down employees without pay when operations are disrupted, and want regular rosters. 
"The Offshore Alliance have made ourselves available to meet with Monadelphous since their [initial] agreement was recently overwhelmingly voted down by [union] members," AWU branch secretary Brad Gandy told Energy News this morning. 
"Monadelphous have taken up the opportunity to meet with us just once which is pretty disappointing. Another meeting was set up but they cancelled that."
The union members voted to take industrial action in a ballot run by the Australian Electoral Commission. No members voted against the motion to strike. 
Under federal legislation members are required to give three days' notice of industrial action. The group's legal team gave Monadelphous formal notice of the strike last Wednesday. 
"There are a whole range of issues that we cannot even discuss with the company as we can't get them to the table," Gandy said. 
 "We are now progressing our claims through the protected action. At this stage there is no reason why our members or the Offshore Alliance will back down. We will keep progressing the claims through bargaining to establish better wages and conditions for our members." 
Energy News understands further industrial action will take place over coming weeks. 
In a statement provided to Energy News a Monadelphous spokesperson said the delivery of safe, reliable and efficient services remains the company's key focus.

"We remain focused on reaching a fair and reasonable outcome, aligned to current market conditions, for all parties under our Maintenance Services Enterprise Agreement," the spokesperson said. 

An Inpex spokesperson told Energy News the strike had not impacted operations at the Ichthys FPSO and operations "continue as normal."