September 26, 2022

President's Page: This is how we win

The TWU continues to make strides in securing better rates and conditions for all transport workers. It is imperative that the employers and clients are kept in check and held accountable for any attacks made on the front-line workers who are bearing the financial brunt and risking their own safety. 

At our recent, successful Delegates’ Conference we had an opportunity to come together and report back on the TWU’s wins during the course of the pandemic, the continuing fights we are in the midst of and the future wins we are looking forward to. With a change of the Federal Government, the onus is on us to make sure we are backed in by the Albanese Government, keeping them accountable to the promises they made to the transport industry before the election win. 

Canberra Convoy

An example of the TWU’s commitment to change was our Convoy to Canberra where road transport workers demonstrated the power of the TWU on a large scale, right outside of the Parliament House. Since the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal was abolished in 2016, truck crash deaths have reached over 1000 cases. Of those deaths, 250 were truck drivers.  We must have a regulating body back in place to fight for safety and to relieve the economic and contracting pressures that affect safety and cause a race to the bottom in Transport. 

We are fighting to end the exploitation of transport workers and fighting to lift rates and standards in the industry. The NSW Branch is supporting our Queensland colleagues for the introduction of Chapter 10a into the Industrial Relations Act in Queensland; this is an attempt to raise the bar. It will see long-needed changes made to contract determinations for transport workers including the addition of minimum standards ensuring Owner Drivers can recover their outgoing costs. They deserve to be able to cover their costs just like any other business. In NSW we have chapter 6 operating successfully, protecting standards for transport workers. 


I would like to congratulate the Dnata members on their win reaching an in-principle agreement with the company. Members successfully negotiated for and locked in job security, more full-time opportunities, 17.2% pay increases by 2023 and better consultation rights. This is a great result for Dnata workers who have been under enormous pressure imposed on them through Qantas’ squeezing of the industry. It is another great example of a TWU win; this is membership power on display.  

Congratulations to our brothers and sisters in Cleanaway and Concrite who are fighting for a fair deal in their EAs, looking for job security, better rates, better conditions and consultation rights. Congratulations for standing united and fighting for what is rightfully yours. Cleanaway has removed all union provisions, picnic day bonuses, union training and  inductions. Cleanaway should be ashamed of themselves. 

The TWU continues to back all its members. This is Union power, and this is how we win.

Tony Matthews,
TWU President


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