The peak body for working people has congratulated union members who stood up for their rights and won a fair workplace agreement in the Chemist’s Warehouse distribution centres in Victoria and Queensland.

After 16 days on strike, people working at Chemist’s Warehouse reached an agreement with management Thursday morning that includes:

– All workers to get a 18.75% wage increase over 4 years, 8.75% of that will come within two weeks. Through classification changes, forklift drivers and trainers to get approximately 22.5% wage increase over four years;

– All casual labour hire members who have been on strike will get permanent jobs;

– A job security clause which ensures labour hire workers become permanent after 6 months;

– Labour hire to get 16% increase (6% upfront);

– Recognition of, and training in, gendered violence;

– Members on four-day week can move to five-day week;

– Agreement wages to apply if outsourced;

– Agreement to apply if relocated;

– Severance pay on redundancy improved compared to NES;

– Renegotiation clause;

– Improvements to OHS including hot and cold policies, PPE provided;

– Employer can roster people on weekend (at weekend penalties) but only by employee consent and with ability to revert.

Quotes attributable to ACTU President Michele O’Neil:

“I congratulate everyone who took the brave decision to stand up for their rights and win a fair deal at Chemist’s Warehouse.

“This is such an important win. Fair pay rises and secure jobs are at the heart of the Change the Rules campaign.

“Today belongs to you – you’re an inspiration to working people across our movement and across the country.”

Quotes attributable to NUW National Secretary Tim Kennedy:

“At a time of serious wage stagnation, it’s great to see workers in their union collectively bargain for wage increases, secure jobs and respect at work.”