16 September 2021

Dear Members,

On Friday, 17 September from 12:01AM Sydney Trains and NSW Trains Cleaning Attendants and Cleaners in Charge from Stations, Turnaround, Maintenance Centres and Stabling Yards have placed a ban on the removal of hazardous waste for 24 hours. The details are:

When: 12.01am on Friday, 17 September 2021 until 12.01am on Saturday, 18 September 2021
Who: Cleaning Attendants and Cleaners in Charge at Sydney Trains and NSW Trains
Where: Wherever there is hazardous waste

What is hazardous waste?

Hazardous waste is a substance with properties that make it dangerous or capable of having a harmful effect on human health. This means on Friday, from 12:01AM until Saturday 12:01AM, if you encounter any type of hazardous waste such as blood, vomit, faeces, urine, or sharps on either a station or on a train, you should not clean it up. Because it cannot be cleaned, you will need to isolate the area and/or lock up the affected carriage and then report the hazardous waste to your manager and they will have to deal with it appropriately.

Over the past 18 months throughout the pandemic, cleaners across the network have risked their lives by ensuring trains and stations are COVID safe for the travelling public. Sadly, the thanks we get from Management is a measly offer of a 0.3% pay increase. This is roughly an 8 cents per hour pay rise and a threat to remove our hard-fought and won redundancy deed.

Management says we’re all in this together. We know this is far from the truth. If we were really in this together Management would recognise and respect the hard work we do as

Cleaners in ensuring the rail network is safe and clean for all. Until management agrees to show us respect by giving us a fair pay rise and commits to not meddling with our deed, we have no choice but to fight.

All Cleaners across Sydney and NSW Trains need to stand together with your fellow members and refuse to the clean any hazardous waste you encounter for the entire day on Friday.

Remember, management cannot take any adverse action against you for taking protected action. If you get even a whiff of bad behaviour, we have a team ready to act immediately.

If you have any questions on what is intended by this action, please contact your Organiser or local Delegate.

In unity,


Issued & authorised by Alex Claassens, Secretary, Rail, Tram and Bus Union – NSW Branch

Level 4, 321 Pitt Street,
Sydney NSW 2000
Tel: (02) 92642511
Fax: (02) 92611342

Last modified: 16/09/2021