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Setka speaks with 3AW’s Neil Mitchell regarding shut downs

Setka speaks with 3AW’s Neil Mitchell regarding shut downs

September 15, 2021

John Setka speaks to 3AW’s Neil  Mitchell regarding lockdowns and the risk of further closures 

CFMEU State Secretary John Setka remains adamant the “vast majority” of workers are doing the right thing and complying with COVID-19 rules.

“But we are a big industry – nearly 300,000 people,” he told Neil Mitchell.

“You’re never going to get everybody following the rules, but I’d like to think the vast majority are doing the right thing.”

Mr Setka welcomed the compliance blitz announced by government on Monday.

He said vaccination rates in the construction sector needed to improve, urging workers to “listen to experts” and not people on the internet.

“I find it insulting from some people that want to put all sorts of drugs in their body, do lines of whatever, smoke ice pipes, smoke 19,000 packets of cigarettes and then say they don’t want to be vaccinated,” Mr Setka said.

“I find it absolutely ridiculous, to be quite honest.

“But there are some people who have legitimate, genuine concerns, and you’ve got to respect that.”

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The CFMEU is advocating for the reopening of Gold Standard construction sites.

The CFMEU is advocating for the reopening of Gold Standard construction sites.

September 14, 2021

The CFMEU is advocating for the reopening of Gold Standard construction sites. In most cases, these are the large-scale commercial operations we do not see in the suburbs.

Only certain construction sites attain a gold standard, which is recognised and issued by the Vic Covid 19 taskforce.

Gold standard sites actively enforce some of the highest standard of workplace covid specific health and safety measures in the world.

Workers and builders on these jobs have gone to extreme measures to ensure the highest standard of covid safety on these sites.

The recent construction outbreaks have only occurred on sites without a gold standard.

To demonstrate the effectiveness of the gold standard measures, during lock down 5, we saw a positive delta case on a gold standard construction site, this only spread to one other person on the site as it was quickly and easily contained by the implementation of the gold standard safety measures.

Worksafe Victoria have verified that gold standard construction sites have met 100% covid safety compliance. 

We are the first industry in Australia to deliver on-site vaccinations with the aim of delivering a minimum 30,000 by year-end. The industry is currently conducting site surveys of vaccination rates and all early results so far have been above 60% mark.

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Lockdown extended, capacity on sites to 25%

Lockdown extended, capacity on sites to 25%

August 17, 2021

The Victorian Government has reduced capacity on large construction sites to 25% or five workers on site (whichever is higher). Critical infrastructure and emergency repairs can continue.

 
From 11:59 Monday 16 August:
  • A curfew will be imposed from 9pm to 5am. Authorised workers are permitted to travel to and from work even when the curfew is in place.
  • Apply a density quotient of one person per four square metres at all sites. Staffing reductions apply, except for critical infrastructure and emergency repairs.
  • The Victorian Government has reduced capacity on large construction sites to 25% or five workers on site (whichever is higher).

From 11:59pm on Tuesday August 17:

  • Authorised workers living in Melbourne will be required to carry permits when working and travelling for work. This includes apprentices training with an Authorised Provider or
    Authorised Worker.
  • Permits need to be certified by an employer
  • Victorians living in regional Victoria and entering metropolitan Melbourne for authorised work must also obtain a permit.
 
Call us on (03) 9341 3444 or email vicqueries@cfmeu.org if you need assistance. You can also get in touch with your organiser or delegate.
 
We are continuing discussions with the Victorian Government and will update you as they progress
 
If you are worried about being stood down, please check Incolink’s advice on Government and other support available: https://bit.ly/3m3YcI3

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Advice regarding COVID-19 Entitlements

Advice regarding COVID-19 Entitlements

August 6, 2021

CFMEU have received reports that some employers have provided incorrect advice regarding COVID-19 entitlements and support available for workers who either have COVID-19 or have COVID-19 symptoms and need to test and isolate. 

Each workplace may have its own policies for supporting workers with COVID-19 however, they must include the following:

  1. Workers who believe they may have COVID-19, or have any symptoms must NOT attend work, if they develop symptoms while on site, they should safely notify their employer, immediately leave site, seek a test, and remain in self-isolation until test results are available.

  2. Negative test results should be immediately communicated to the employer, who should facilitate an immediate return to work without prejudice.
  1. Positive results should also be immediately communicated to the employer. Following any mandatory isolation period per Health authorities, the employer should facilitate an immediate return to work without prejudice.
  1. Any worker financially disadvantaged due to the above may be eligible for the Federal Government’s Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment. Workers who are disadvantaged should check the eligibility requirements and contact Services Australia to apply.
    ** Note: If workers are unwell, due to having COVID-19 or other illness, accrued sick leave may be taken. If sick leave is taken, workers may become ineligible for other payments, such as the Federal Government’s Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment.
  1. There may also be additional supports and entitlements available in your Award or EBA. Members who are unsure of what entitlements and support are available should contact the Union Office on (03) 9341 3444 to discuss their individual circumstances.

This advice is current as of the date of publication. However, the policy and advice may change as the COVID-19 situation develops.

 

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Construction to remain open during lockdown #6

Construction to remain open during lockdown #6

August 6, 2021

Building and Construction to remain open

The Victorian Government’s Chief Health Officer re-introduced public health measures to control the latest COVID-19 outbreak.

The Chief Health Officer has stated that construction workers are considered “authorised workers” and can continue to work during lockdown #6.

It’s important that members continue to monitor and follow Victorian Government health advice, industry guidelines and COVIDSafe procedures.
For the most accurate and up-to-date health advice including exposure sites visit https://www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/
 
Stay safe, brothers and sisters.
 

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Lockdown #5 to end

Lockdown #5 to end

July 27, 2021

Lockdown #5 will end tonight 

From midnight tonight, the five reasons to leave home no longer apply, plus;

  • travel limit in Victoria is lifted, 
  • schools, retail and hospitality can reopen,
  • visitors to the home, crowds at the footy, and public events are not permitted for a further 2 weeks

The CFMEU Elizabeth street office will re-open tomorrow at 25% capacity.

Face masks MUST still be carried and WORN indoors and outdoors and pending a check of the new Workplace Directions overnight, the current density quotient of 1 person per 4 sqm remains.

These are the current settings under our Industry COVID-19 Guidelines and must be observed on all building and construction sites.

To download the Building & Construction Industry update for July 27 click:

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Gold Standard Sites

Gold Standard Sites

July 26, 2021

Our Gold Standard site questionnaire has been beefed up!

As we continue to adapt to the challenges of the current lockdown, and the delta variant – our Gold Standard site questionnaire has been amended to accommodate additional COVID-safe measures. 

Download the latest checklist below:

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Your cooperation & COVID-safe rules are keeping us operational

Your cooperation & COVID-safe rules are keeping us operational

July 20, 2021

Due our well established COVID-safe practices – we continue to successfully manage further outbreaks.

A Multiplex consultant visited three CBD sites late last week, later testing positive. As a direct result of the implementation of the Industry COVID-19 Guidelines, – ie temperature testing, workplace mapping and mandatory wearing of face masks, Multiplex was quickly able to provide key contract tracing information to Dept. of Health and minimise the downtime of these project sites. 

Given the limited interaction with Multiplex staff and subcontractors, there is little to no likelihood of cross contamination from this outbreak to other subcontractors in the industry.

There is currently a positive case linked to the West Gate Tunnel project, where a V-line
employee who attended the project last Thursday has since tested positive. This case is under
review at present but again, most likely little to no risk of cross contamination to other projects.
 
Another construction site affected is LEND LEASE’s works at HMAS Cerberus where multiple
work sites were declared exposure sites as a result of a serving naval person testing positive. 
 
Please continue to follow the COVID-safe rules we have put in place so we can keep safe and working.

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Construction to remain open for lockdown #5

Construction to remain open for lockdown #5

July 15, 2021

Building and Construction Industry to reman open for lockdown #5

This evening the Victorian Government’s Chief Health Officer re-introduced public health measures to control the latest COVID-19 outbreak.
The Chief Health Officer stated that workers who were authorised to work in the last lockdown are also authorised to work during this lockdown. That means construction remains open.
It’s important that members continue to monitor and follow health advice, industry guidelines and COVID Safe procedures.
To download the Building and Construction Industry Update for July 15 click here
 
For the most accurate and up-to-date exposure sites visit https://www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/
Stay safe
 

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POSITIVE CASES IN VICTORIA & NEW PUBLIC EXPOSURE SITES

POSITIVE CASES IN VICTORIA & NEW PUBLIC EXPOSURE SITES

July 15, 2021

FACE MASKS ARE BACK ON at work

 

It was reported yesterday that there were 7 new locally acquired positive cases in Victoria since the morning’s daily update.

These cases stem from the NSW outbreak. There are 33 public exposure sites listed on the Department of Health website at
https://www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/exposure-site, including sections of the Highpoint Shopping
Centre and the MCG.

Earlier this week, we recommended that workers who were household members of anyone who had been to a public exposure site NOT attend work until a negative COVID-19 test result has been obtained.
 
Face masks are mandatory again indoors –
other than in private homes – and outdoors if you cannot maintain 1.5 metres physical distance.
This means that FACE MASKS ARE BACK ON at work, as of midnight last night (Wed 14 July).
 
1)  Declare if you or a household member have been to a public exposure site
2) Enforce wearing of masks