we will bargain together

25 January 2022

Dear Members,

Over the past few months, RTBU members have taken a series of strong and united industrial actions to try and progress bargaining for a new Enterprise Agreement.

While workers have been fighting hard to reach a fair agreement, Sydney Trains and NSW Trains management have continued to show disrespect towards your EA delegates and all RTBU members. After 30 meetings, they are still refusing to properly negotiate in good faith.

It has become clear that we need to escalate further.

The actions we originally applied for in the first Protected Action Ballot back in June last year have been effective and have showed management how serious we are. However, given the length of time this bargain is taking, almost entirely because of management, we now need to broaden our future actions to enable maximum impact.

To do this, we have applied to the Fair Work Commission for a new Protected Action Ballot to broaden the scope of actions members can take. If successful, no action will be off the table. This is an opportunity to continue to grow the strength and solidarity we’ve gained across the network during this bargaining process, as well as to get creative and hit harder.

What happens next?

Sydney Trains and NSW Trains have not opposed our application for a new Protected Action Ballot like they did last time. This means the FWC has already made ballot orders. Once voting opens, the same process as last time will apply.

You will be sent an email from CiVS with a new login and password. You will then have 7 days from the opening of the ballot to cast your vote. If you need to update your details, please do so by Thursday 27 January by contacting the RTBU office.

Voting opens 0900 Wednesday 2 February

Members should vote YES to both items in the vote.

The actions to be voted on are:

  1. Taking protected industrial action in the form of an unlimited number of stoppages of work of 1 to 24 hours in duration;
  2. Bans or limitations on the manner in which work is undertaken

Despite this new vote – we are still able to take all previous actions from the first PAB.

It’s important that all members have their say and cast their vote. As a reminder, for the ballot to be successful we need to make sure at least 50% of all members vote, with over 50% of those that vote voting yes.

Voting will close at midday Wednesday 9 February. We will update members as the PAB progresses.

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: 25/01/2022