SAMFS ADVISE OF SFF UNDER AND OVER PAYMENTS 

UFUSA News

Our union is concerned to have been advised by the MFS this week that a situation has arisen wherein Senior Firefighters Level 2 who had progressed to the next pay scale apparently/allegedly were not progressed appropriately through the classification steps, commencing 2022. 

We are advised that this has resulted in significant overpayments (and some underpayments) to approximately 60 members who will receive notification of calculations of all overpayments from Shared Services in coming weeks. 

Members are advised that we have today notified the employer of a dispute over the matter in order that the process of recovery of any overpayments is put on hold while further detail is obtained to allow us to assess the situation with certainty, provide legal advice to members and to verify the calculations being used. 

Members who are affected are urged to let us know of that ASAP by contacting us at the UFU office, calling on 8352 7211 or emailing info@ufusa.com.au

In the meantime members should not proceed to pay any amount with the purpose of the dispute notice providing members with some safe breathing space on this together with the ability to ensure we have the opportunity to understand precisely what has occurred and what needs to happen next. 

It may be that repayments are required of individuals however it is best if we are certain that there is a legal obligation, that the calculations are accurate and that any repayments are fair and reasonable. 

It is heartening that a more enlightened MFS leadership has already expressed regret for the distress caused to staff, taken action to ensure any overpayments cease, and initiated steps to try to address future system error and we will work with them to resolve this matter for SFFs as quickly as possible. 

Ongoing meetings are also being held to address UFU concerns about the lack of quality, accuracy and clarity of payslips provided to staff by Shared Services which would make it difficult for our members to have identified any potential overpayments as they arose. 

All members are urged to check your payslips regularly, and to print out and retain a hard copy of them. There will likely come a time when you will be very glad you did. 

OTR RETAIN DAY WORK ALLOWANCE 

Members were very concerned this week to be advised that the Day Work Allowance would no longer apply to members employed in OTR. We are glad to report that A/CO Jeff Swann has confirmed to the UFU that there will be no change to the application of the allowance for OTR without prior consultation. No such consultation has occurred to date, nor would it be likely to succeed. 

REVIEW OF INVESTIGATION AND DISCIPLINARY PROCESSES IN THE EMERGENCY SERVICES SECTOR 

A meeting was held today with the Commissioner for Public Sector Employment Ms Erma Ranieri and Mr Daniel Wills of the office of the Minister for Emergency Services in relation to the review underway of the investigation and disciplinary processes in the emergency services sector. 

Our union was very clear that there are certainly areas for improvement in the investigation and disciplinary processes however there are weighty matters still outstanding which require independent investigation and action by government if the issues of real concern are to be addressed and the organisation to reach its full potential under new leadership. Watch this space… 

STATION VISITS 

The hospitality extended by crews at stations visited in the last fortnight is greatly appreciated, especially the yummy chocolate brownies (Stephen), the scrumptious scones (Jonno) and the delicious, healthy lunch bowl (Beau). Not to mention all the great coffees so generously made for us. 

Importantly, the many and varied issues addressed while at each station informs your union of the matters of concern to you and permits me update you in more detail about what your union is up to. Quite a lot of issues requiring follow-up have been raised and I am addressing them and getting back to you as quickly as possible; I’m conscious there are quite a few outstanding so thank you for your patience. The new station at O’Halloran Hill in particular is clearly overdue, but hopefully some interim actions are on the way. I look forward to many more station visits in the forthcoming weeks so don’t forget to let me know if you’d like to see us at your station soon. 

MFS SECONDARY EMPLOYMENT CONSULTATION PERIOD EXTENDED 

As reported previously, A/Chief Officer Jeff Swann agreed to extend the consultation period for submissions and feedback on the MFS draft SAP relating to Secondary Employment to 15 March 2024. 

Thank you to all those who have taken the trouble to make submissions to both the MFS and through to our union. The UFU submission is currently being written for consideration by State Council at our next meeting on 14 March 2024 so please let us know now of any issues you’d like included. 

You are encouraged to raise your concerns directly with the MFS however we understand that some members may prefer to direct comments and feedback through your union for reasons such as confidentiality and if so, you can email your concerns and views to info@ufusa.com.au and please mark it “Secondary Employment”. It would be appreciated if you would do this ASAP. 

ELECTRONIC UFUSA ELECTIONS IN 2024 – ARE YOUR CONTACT DETAILS UP TO DATE? 

As members are aware, elections will be held in the near future, so this is a reminder of the importance of your personal details being up to date in our UFUSA records. 

This will ensure the electoral roll is correct and that you will receive your ballot immediately when the time comes. If you have recently changed your home or personal email address, or your home or mobile phone number please let us know ASAP by calling us on 8352 7211, emailing info@ufusa.com.au, or https://www.ufusa.com.au/ufusa-membership-update/

In solidarity 

SAMFS ADVISE OF SFF UNDER AND OVER PAYMENTS 

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United Fire Fighters Union Of South Australia - UFUSA

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