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Spotless Services, which relied on vital Defence Force support staff working throughout Covid-19, has left contract cleaners, groundskeepers and range operators at RAAF Garbutt and Lavarack Barracks in Townsville with no choice but to walk off the job today.

“The lack of gratitude for these vital Defence Force support staff is astonishing,” said Damien Davie, United Workers Union Property Services spokesperson.

“When it was the height of Covid-19 it was all hands on deck and these workers showed up every single day to keep the Defence Force response rolling through the pandemic.

“Yet when it comes to showing them the least amount of respect or giving these workers a fair pay rise, Spotless Services just shuts up shop.”

Workers are calling on their contractor to deliver a fair pay deal, an offer that recognises the value of their work, after Spotless put a miserly 2 per cent on the table.

United Workers Union member George Clemments who works at the Townsville base said: “All we are asking for is a fair go. Spotless refuses to recognise the value we bring to this company and 2 per cent is not enough to make a difference to our financial situation.”

Workers rejected the company’s 2 per cent pay offer last week and vow they will continue to take industrial action until Spotless Services shows workers the respect they deserve.

Mr Davie added: “We’re talking about people who have worked tirelessly in support of our defence force throughout the pandemic. They worked tirelessly before it, and they will work tirelessly after it. And right now, they will be tireless in their fight for a fair pay deal.

“Without these workers, our defence facilities could not operate. They are essential and deserve respect. This is a disrespectful offer that would do little to improve their standard of living.”


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