SAFE RATES ORDER EXPLAINED


March

WHAT IS THE SAFE RATES ORDER

Safe Rates is a campaign run by the TWU all across Australia, calling for greater safety in your industry through the introduction minimum rates of pay, and payment for all time worked.

After a long and hard fought campaign by the Transport Workers’ Union the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal was established. The Tribunal has now handed down it’s first order setting minimum and enforceable rates for eligible contractor drivers.

The Order is called the Contractor Driver Minimum Payments Road Safety Remuneration Order 2016.

Q) WHO DOES THE ORDER APPLY TO?

A) The Order applies to contractor drivers who provide transport services in relation to anything destined for sale in a supermarket chain or in relation to a long distance operation.

Q) WHEN WILL THE ORDER APPLY?

A) The Contractor Driver Minimum Payments Road Safety Remuneration Order 2016 commence on 4 April 2016.

Q) WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR ME?

A) The Order provides for:

  • Payment for time spent providing the transport service;
  • Minimum Rates;
  • Unpaid Leave;
  • Audit Processes

Q) WHAT TIME CAN I BE PAID FOR?

A) Contractor drivers must be paid for each hour or part thereof during which they are:

  • Required to be at the disposal and direction of the hirer;
  • Queuing and/or waiting;
  • Loading or unloading;
  • Inspecting or attending to loads;
  • Refuelling;
  • Resting for each period of rest time of 30 minutes or less;
  • Completing hirers documentation;
  • Waiting because of natural disaster (up to 8 hours in every 24).

Q) SO WHAT IS THE MINIMUM RATE?

A) The minimum rates are set out in the schedules to the Order and vary depending upon:

  • The grade of work being performed (linked to the mass of the vehicle);
  • The class of the vehicle being driven; and
  • The type of trailers being towed;
  • Whether the work is local supermarket work or long distance work.

The rates are determined by reference to both an hourly rate and a rate per kilometre as follows:

(TIME x HOURLY RATE) + (KM DRIVEN x RATE PER KM)

Q) DO I HAVE TO BE PAID THIS WAY?

A) As it stands, no. However, a hirer must be able to prove that a contracted driver would be better off over 28 days than if they had been paid the Safe Rate.

Local Supermarket drivers must be paid using the Safe Rate method from the 3rd of October, 2016, unless they are covered by a Road Transport Collective Agreement, which must leave drivers better off than the Safe Rate.

Q) WHY ARE SAFE RATES SO IMPORTANT?

A) All too often, transport companies and owner drivers that work for them are forced by those at the top of the supply chain to accept rates and conditions that are unsafe and unsustainable.

Safe Rates will help to ease downward pressure on rates, which will in turn help to reduce the death toll in the profession with the highest fatality rate in Australia.

The Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal with have a rates calculation tool available on its website from early 2016 to assist contractor drivers from calculating the minimum rates that apply to them. Click here for more information. 

The best way to stay up to date on RSRT developments is to join the TWU. Transport workers have fought hard to get this win, and it’s only through the solidarity of members that these wins can be enacted in legislation.

Check out the payments calculator here: http://paymentscalculator.rsrt.gov.au/

 

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