Adelaide Airport could see disruption to passenger travel in the coming weeks if rates and conditions of security workers are slashed following a change of contractor.
The Transport Workers’ Union (TWU) is warning the potential downgrading of pay and conditions of security staff will result in safety and security risks at the airport.
Workers have been told to re-apply for their jobs while no firm commitment has been made to maintain current pay rates or conditions, following Adelaide Airport’s awarding of the security contract to SNP Security, previously held by ISS Facility Services.
A meeting will take place today Tuesday between the TWU and the new and previous contractors when the concerns of workers will be put forward.
SNP takes over the contract on March 18.
TWU SA/NT senior branch official Matt Burnell said the Federal Government and Adelaide Airport must ensure that both companies facilitate the transfer of jobs with the same terms and conditions.
“The Federal Government must take responsibility for these workers and any threat to their pay and conditions.
“Adelaide Airport made the decision to change contractor, a decision we assume was based either wholly or partly on cost.
“But the travelling public won’t thank the airport for choosing a low cost contract if it means compromising on safety and security.
“This is precisely the effect at airports when workers’ wages and conditions are slashed to save money because it results in high turnover of staff and a loss of experienced, well-trained security workers.
“This is why we are demanding that jobs are transferred between contractors with the same conditions applying,” he said.
Adelaide Airport had revenues in excess of $200 million last year with passenger numbers increasing to over eight million.
“The Government has the power to ensure that all workers, some of whom have been securing the safety of passengers at Adelaide Airport for decades, are offered jobs with the new contractor on the same rates and conditions as they are currently receiving.
“This is about maintaining standards at our airports and ensuring against a race to the bottom in aviation that will see security and safety compromised.
“If the Federal Government is concerned about security then it must combat the risks posed through the potential for downgrading working conditions at Adelaide Airport,” Burnell added.