Monday, November 9, 2015 3:37 am
Australia’s internationals airports are expected to grind to a halt on Monday, when more than 5,000 Australian Border Force officials going on strike for 24 hours.
Customs officials from eight of the nation’s international airports will be joined by full-time workers from maritime ports and mail centers, who are opposing proposed government cuts to pay and conditions.
Airports affected by the expected delays include Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth, Darwin, Cairns and Gold Coast, and the action will affect passport checks, as well as create a slower processing time of baggage and cargo.
The Immigration Department has urged international passengers to arrive at airports earlier than usual “to avoid delays”.
The Community and Public Sector Union’s (CPSU) Nadine Flood suggested that passengers take early steps to mitigate any delays.
“We don’t want to inconvenience passengers, but we would suggest that people get to airports early,” she told the media.
“This is a really tough decision for Border Force workers and we do know it will impact the public.”
Meanwhile Australia’s Employment Minister, Michaelia Cash, slammed the union for supporting a strike, and said that passengers would be “unlikely” to support a strike.
“The government is disappointed that the CPSU has chosen go on strike and disadvantage travelers rather than sitting down and negotiating a new agreement using the flexibility provided by the government’s revised bargaining policy,” Cash said.
“Travelers are unlikely to be sympathetic to the CPSU’s approach of striking instead of talking.”
The 24-hour strike began in the early hours of Monday morning.