Last updated: 06:56 PM ET, Sun September 20 2015

10 Days of Strike Actions to Commence Monday at Australia's International Airports

Impacting Travel | Michael Isenbek | September 20, 2015

10 Days of Strike Actions to Commence Monday at Australia's International Airports

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Air travelers going to and from Australia are about to see a raft of delays for more than a week as the country’s Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) commences ten days of strike actions Monday at eight international airports, Sky News reported.

This latest disruption comes nearly two months after thousands of DIBP and Department of Agriculture employees in the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) engaged in work stoppages at Australian airports and seaports to protest pay and working conditions. The same union is conducting this imminent strike with similar grievances, Sky News said.

Citing CPSU comments, Sky News said DIBP staff are “furious” over a proposed wage cut that has some workers earning $8,000 less a year.

Airport employees tasked with processing arriving and departing international travelers are slated to stop work twice a day for two hours during peak activity in the morning and afternoon at Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Darwin, Coolangatta and Cairns, according to Sky News. Friday saw a preview of what is to come with work actions at Cairns, Perth and Darwin, as per the DIBP website.

But according to the union, the government plans to bring in hundreds of managers as airport “strike breakers,” Sky News said.

Regarding the arrival of these scabs, CPSU secretary Nadine Flood told Sky News Sunday, “They're turning heavy-handed tactics on their own workforce, when sitting down and resolving this 18-month dispute would be a better option … It's an extraordinary operation at taxpayers' expense.”

Though Sky News noted that it isn’t clear how the DIBP will “fill the gaps,” the Australian Border Force commented on Facebook, “Arrangements are in place to protect Australia's borders and minimize the impact on our operations.” But they did add, “if you are going overseas, we advise you to arrive at the airport early.”

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