The Courier-Mail

A DEVINE IN­TER­VEN­TION

Build­ing firm al­legedly ex­cluded non-union con­trac­tor

- EX­CLU­SIVE DES HOUGHTON

A QUEENS­LAND con­struc­tion com­pany al­legedly dis­crim­i­nated against a steel fab­ri­ca­tion firm be­cause it did not have a CFMEU-friendly en­ter­prise agree­ment.

Devine Con­struc­tions stopped the steel fab­ri­ca­tion firm from work­ing on a Tener­iffe apart­ment block when it had a con­tract to do so, and re­fused to en­gage the com­pany for other work, ac­cord­ing to a state­ment of claim in the Fed­eral Court.

Devine Con­struc­tions’ gen­eral man­ager Michael Tucker and two em­ploy­ees, Wayne Sen­gel­man and An­drew Blore, were also ac­cused of breach­ing the Fair Work Act.

The charges fol­low an ex­ten­sive in­ves­ti­ga­tion by Fair Work Build­ing & Con­struc­tion, the fed­eral con­struc­tion watchdog. In­ves­ti­ga­tors fol­lowed an email trail back to Novem­ber 2013.

A CFMEU of­fi­cial al­legedly told Devine Con­struc­tions not to al­low the steel fab­ri­ca­tion com­pany to per­form any work.

“You guys aren’t al­lowed to do any work here,” Mr Sen­gel­man, Devine Con­struc­tions’ pro­ject man­ager told two of the steel fab­ri­ca­tion com­pany’s work­ers who turned up to the Com­mer­cial Rd site to de­liver and in­stall bolts.

“Just as work­ers should not be dis­crim­i­nated against for be­ing a mem­ber, or not be­ing a mem­ber, of a union, con­trac­tors should not be dis­ad­van­taged if they do not have a spe­cific kind of en­ter­prise agree­ment,” said Nigel Hadgkiss, FWBC di­rec­tor.

FWBC al­leges Devine Con­struc­tions broke the law five times and that Mr Tucker, Mr Sen­gel­man and Mr Blore broke the law dur­ing the ne­go­ti­a­tions.

FWBC al­leges that over a pe­riod of months, Devine Con­struc­tions re­ceived ten­ders from at least eight com­pa­nies for the work.

Craig’s En­gi­neer­ing was only given the op­por­tu­nity to sub­mit an ini­tial price and one re­served price, while oth­ers were given an ini­tial price and in­vited to re­vise their bids two or three times.

A Devine Con­struc­tions doc­u­ment ten­dered in ev­i­dence con­tained a note: “Union rec­om­mended not to use – in the process of sign­ing an EBA (En­ter­prise Bar­gain­ing Agree­ment).”

Mr Tucker de­cided not to award the work to Craig’s En­gi­neer­ing.

Mr Blore al­legedly told Craig’s it needed an agree­ment be­fore it could ob­tain work. “We do not want any prob­lems with the union,” he al­legedly said.

A di­rec­tions hear­ing is sched­uled for Oc­to­ber 12.

CON­TRAC­TORS SHOULD NOT BE DIS­AD­VAN­TAGED IF THEY DO NOT HAVE A SPE­CIFIC KIND OF EN­TER­PRISE AGREE­MENT

Nigel Hadgkiss

 ??  ?? WATCH:
Nigel Hadgkiss warns firms should not be af­fected.
WATCH: Nigel Hadgkiss warns firms should not be af­fected.

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