The rate is the minimum minimum in the premium and the minimum Big W is legally obliged to pay if an expired contract falls below the premium. SDA Secretary of State Gerard Dwyer praised the „incredible“ election results and said the union had worked closely with members to ensure better job security, wages and a „higher“ redundancy plan. The chain is expected to soon reach a new EBA that will restore full premium rates, but the agreement could result in cost increases ranging from $30 million to $40 million in the first year, even in the absence of annual salary increases. Unlike Kmart`s new agreement with the SDA, which requires workers to join the INDUSTRIAL fund REST, workers will have the choice between superfunds. Big W`s new deal could be blocked in the labour court. Credit: Glenn Hunt Workers approved the new Collective Agreement for Businesses (EBA) by an overwhelming majority in a vote that ended on March 18, two weeks before Big W owner Woolworths said it would close 30 of its subsidiaries in its 180-person network across the country. The SDA has worked hard to ensure that your pay is protected and to guarantee salary increases. Team members received salary increases in December 2018 and will be increased again in May 2019. Wages will increase on the basis of the salary increase provided by the SDA with the ACTU to the Fair Work Commission in July of each year during the Annual Wage Review (AWR). The retail and fast food workers` union says it will challenge the new agreement on the removal of long-standing employment protection, which has prevented Big W from forcibly laying off workers. „More than 90% of the electorate supported the proposal, and we look forward to quickly offering our members the benefits of the new agreement.“ The Fair Work Commission has approved the new enterprise agreement for the Big W discount department store, which will have about 16,000 employees across Australia. „With the support of [Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees` Association] and [Australian Workers` Union], we have presented an agreement that provides better terms for our team while supporting the continuation of our company`s trend reversal,“ said a Big W spokesperson.
But the pay gap is expected to be even larger than for competitors at Wesfarmers, K-Mart or woolworth, both of which have a buffer to pay higher weekly rates. Big W`s is the youngest in a series of a major retailer to get these conditions in their EBA after a pioneering shutdown of the FWC in 2016, that the agreements cannot put workers less well than they would be below the minimum wage.