CQU Bargaining Update – It’s time to have your say!

Posted on September 18, 2017

I'm sure many of you will be happy to hear that finally there is a new proposed agreement for you to consider after Unions reached an in-principle agreement with management at CQU.

Please click the link to see the final draft of the proposed Central Queensland University Enterprise Agreement 2017.

Management have commenced their consultation process with staff and the timelines are as follow.

Consultation period: Thursday 14 September – Friday 22 September.

Voting period – Monday 25 September - Friday 29 September (closing at 4:00pm).

After months of intensive negotiations between the relevant unions and CQU management it is time for members to have your say.  

Key outcomes for members:

Members have told us since the first survey that their priority is maintaining job security and current conditions. This has been our focus during negotiations and what we have been fighting for.

Wages Offer:

CQU is proposing a wage offer to all staff of five increases of 2% over the life of the agreement.

Schedule of increases:

  • 2% payable on Fair Work Commission approval
  • 2% payable on 30 September 2018
  • 2% payable on 30 August 2019
  • 2% payable on 30 July 2020
  • 2% payable on 30 June 2021

In addition, to recognise our claim of seeking parity for Educators with their TAFE counterparts CQU have agreed to an additional upfront 2.5% salary adjustment in order to maintain parity.

This also takes into account that VET educators have not received a pay increase since 2015. The offer will absorb the locality allowance currently paid to VET educators.

This means that TAFE Queensland and CQU VET educators will have parity in salary at the end of the TAFE Queensland agreement and CQU will have a further 3 guaranteed pay increases beyond that point.


In principle agreement has also been reached around the following issues:

  • 5.4 weeks annual leave plus 3 days Christmas Closure (essentially 6 weeks annual leave
  • 26 weeks paid maternity leave
  • 2 weeks paid partner parental leave
  • 10 days paid sick leave
  • 5 days paid carer's leave
  • 10 days paid domestic violence leave
  • Provisions for other types of leave - workplace relations training, defence forces, jury service etc.
  • 5 days Indigenous Cultural Leave for people who identify as an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person
  • Workload management processes
  • Dispute resolution processes
  • Flexibility provisions
  • Professional development (2% of salaries)
  • Joint Consultative Committee consultation on workplace changes/issues
  • Some minor changes to span of hours for Birdcage, DARD, IaTD
  • First aid allowance for designated first aid officers (new to VET Educators)
  • Change to non-attendance time to Professional Reflection and Preparation
  • Changes to the definitions of misconduct/serious misconduct to align with the Fair Work Act
  • New fixed term category in order to support significant unserviced student enrolment
  • Change to new organisational area category to change minimum number of staff engaged
  • Superannuation provisions for fixed term staff
  • Casual rates for VET Educators
  • Team Based Work Arrangements

VET Educators:

In addition to those issues already outlined there have also been significant negotiations around preserving entitlements for our VET educators:

In principle Agreement around:

  • Extending accountability of programmed time to the full 36 1/4 hours but with a strengthening of the capacity to, with consultation, work off campus.
  • Proposed 5.4 Weeks Recreation Leave and 3 days for Christmas shut down reflects an overall improvement to current conditions. The net time allocated to REC and RPP is equivalent to NAT and REC in TAFE QLD.
  • Clarifications re timelines for dispute resolution
  • Inclusion of paid rest provisions for VET educators consistent with state provisions.
  • Updating of leave provisions including Domestic Violence Leave.
  • Inclusion of comprehensive clauses in classification standards schedules re duties for VET

Matters not agreed:

Unfortunately, there were two matters for VET members that were not able to be resolved.

  • Single agreement

Whilst it was the position of your Union and the QTU to have a standalone agreement this was not supported by CQU management and the NTEU. Whilst the preferred single agreement model has not been achieved there has been significant work undertaken to ensure that VET educators are not disadvantaged by being incorporated into one collective agreement.

  • Increased Minimum contact time:

CQU originally sought to increase, as part of their claim for increased productivity contact time for teachers to 23 hours and for tutors to 26 hours. The negotiated outcome reflected in the proposed agreement is 22 hours for teachers and 25 hours for tutors. 

We are pleased with the outcomes of negotiations for Professional staff members covered by the agreement and whilst there are a couple of outstanding matters we were not able to reach agreement on for our VET members we believe that overall it is a positive outcome for our members at CQU and superior to a number of agreements being achieved in the Higher Education sector currently.

Thank you to members for your ongoing feedback and support of this process. Together we are stronger so please share this email with your colleagues and ask them to join Together too.

If you have any questions about the contents of the proposed agreement or would like to arrange a workplace meeting to discuss the proposed EB please let us know at universities@together.org.au.

1800 177 244