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2020-03-16

coronavirus

STREAMLINED CONTACTLESS DELIVERY, SIGNAGE IN POST OFFICES, SOCIAL DISTANCING RECOMMENDATIONS

Your Union has continued to seek further protections for members as we navigate through uncharted territory in relation to the emerging worldwide Novel Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. These conversations between your Union and all major employer groups who employ our members are ongoing.

NEW MEASURES FOR POST OFFICES

Following member feedback since the outbreak worsened, we have pushed for notices, reminding customers of good hygiene practices, to be displayed within post offices and we are pleased that Post has agreed to this.

From yesterday, posters will be displayed in Post Offices, requesting for customers who have symptoms of illness, not to enter the outlet. Post have also placed updated information on their coronavirus information page online – calling on customers to keep at least one metre from others and to practice good hygiene. The update can be found here: https://auspost.com.au/about-us/news-media/important-updates/coronavirus

NEW MEASURES FOR THE DELIVERY OF ARTICLES TO CUSTOMER PREMISES

Following feedback from members and ongoing dialogue with Post this weekend, we are also pleased to share that the company have agreed to our calls for a streamlined ‘contactless delivery’ procedure.

Therefore, members delivering articles to customers will no longer be required to question whether a customer is suffering symptoms of illness, or in self-isolation related to COVID-19.

The new updated procedures now require members to remain at least 1.5 metres from all customers when delivering to their premises, confirm the customer’s name and inform them you are leaving the parcel for them without requiring any contact for the purpose of obtaining a signature.

MORE NEEDED ON SOCIAL DISTANCING

Whilst we welcome both initiatives, we continue our call for stronger social distancing measures in the workplace and a commitment to ‘special leave’ provisions for any employee who may require additional time off to recover from, or care for someone, if affected by the virus.

The Federal Government has issued a call for everybody to keep at least 1.5 metres away from each other and other employers, such as Telstra, who have gone so far as to cancel all in-person meetings involving 25 or more people and have introduced work-from-home arrangements across their entire office-based workforce.                                                                                        

And whilst we understand the complexities of having to manage the running of the organisation during such a difficult time, we feel Post could be introducing further flexibility to ensure effective social distancing at work – including the cancellation of meetings and working at home arrangements for those most at risk.

UNION DIRECTIONS ON MEMBERS’ HEALTH AND SAFETY

Therefore, your Union is directing all members to take all steps they feel are reasonable and appropriate to protect their health and safety whilst at work.

Specifically, the Union feels it would not be unreasonable to refuse to participate in gatherings or formal meetings where members are required to remain in close proximity to others statically for an extended period, nor do we believe it would be unreasonable for members to refuse interactions with any customer who displays symptoms of illness.

Should you encounter any difficulty when attempting to invoke your rights to a safe workplace, please contact your State Branch Official immediately, for assistance.

TEMPORARY MEASURES TO REDUCE EXPOSURE AND SPREAD TO CWU OFFICIALS AND MEMBERS

Your Union is also an employer, and as an employer, we have had to take important decisions to implement temporary measures to reduce exposure to the virus to our employees – your Officials.

Your Officials and Industrial Officers schedule visits to all workplaces across the country each year, in addition to the many close interactions they have, in person, with members daily.

Therefore, in order to reduce the risk of exposing your Officials and our employees to COVID-19, some State Branches have taken measures to suspend workplace visits, meetings and to close their premises to the public.

These measures are also an effort to eliminate the risk of an Official becoming infected themselves, and inadvertently exposing members to the virus in their workplaces.

Officials in those State Branches remain contactable by telephone and all other Union services will continue as usual. For service changes in your state, please contact your State Branch Office for further information.

We are continuing to engage with your employers at the most senior levels and will ensure you have access to relevant information as soon as possible.

Yours faithfully,



GREG RAYNER
NATIONAL DIVISIONAL SECRETARY

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