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Employment Relations, Utilities

NSW energy workers to strike for fair pay

ETU < 1 mins read
More than 1,000 workers across energy generator TransGrid and distributor Endeavour Energy will on today walk off the job for 24 hours in separate industrial action, to demand a fair pay rise.

Electrical Trades Union members will rally at Parramatta Square for a wage deal that keeps pace with living costs that have skyrocketed since the pandemic. At Endeavour Energy, wages have risen just 10.5 per cent since 2019 while inflation is up 18 per cent. At Transgrid wages have only increased eight per cent over the same period.

The same tightfistedness has not applied to Endeavour Energy corporate overhead costs which are in excess of 400% over the same period.

ETU NSW/ACT Secretary, Allen Hicks, said: “These privatised energy operators are raking it in, while workers’ pay has plummeted in real terms.

“Workers simply cannot afford to keep going backwards. Pay rises have moved at half the rate of the inflation. Take home pay is shrinking.” 

The protected industrial action will push out the maintenance backlog and disrupt operations including at Transgrid’s troubled 900km, $2.3 billion electricity interconnector, EnergyConnect.

“We’ll continue ramping up industrial action until these bosses agree to sit down and agree to a pay deal that recognised the surging cost of living,” Mr Hicks said. 

“The deal we are after for members will help energy workers catch up. Inflation is coming under control, and workers need a fair go.”

Endeavour Energy operates the electrical network from Ulladulla in the NSW Shoalhaven region, up to Waterfall and western Sydney. It is partly privatised, with the NSW government retaining a 49.6 per cent stake. TransGrid was privatised in 2015. Its largest owners are the Utilities Trust of Australia, Spark Infrastructure, and Tawreed Investments. 

ETU Endeavour Energy members will protest at Parramatta Square (Darcy & Macquarie streets) from 930am today, Thursday, 8 February.

Further inquiries: 0405 285 547

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