CODE 2, VOL 34, NO 29 : 15 july 2020

UFUQ wins motor vehicle allowance dispute!

I take great pleasure in informing you that your union has won a long fought battle against the fire service for the payment of motor vehicle allowance to members in all seven regions, not just Brisbane and North Coast.

Over the last few months, we have been pursuing a series of underpayment test cases, based on the travel claims of four members in Central Region. Yesterday, we were able to reach a negotiated settlement with the Fire Service, with the assistance of the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission.

This win will address a long standing unjust practice of mileage being paid to some members and not others, just because of the region they are employed in.

BR & NCR members please NOTE:
The existing long-standing motor vehicle allowance arrangements remain in your regions as they are already equal to that which we obtained for the remainder of the state.

From today, all firefighters and station officers in SER, SWR, CR, NR & FNR will be able to claim the motor vehicle allowance when they use their own car or motorbike to travel further than their normal station to relieve, either at level or in a higher role. The allowance will be paid for up to five tours of relieving, and this may be this extended for longer terms upon application. 

We also won 12 months of back payment, meaning that hundreds of members in those five regions will now be able to claim the allowance for additional travel they’ve incurred in the last year (BR and NCR members would have already been claiming the allowance, so no backpay arrangements are required for these two regions).

If you work in one of these five regions and you’ve travelled to a station/office other than your normal work location to relieve (either at level or in a higher role) in the last 12 months, and you’ve used your own motor vehicle to travel, you will be able to put in a claim for back payment of the allowance.

We are seeking confirmation from the fire service as to their process to deal with these claims and we will put out another Code 2 as soon as possible with details on how to make your claim.

If you’d like to read more about the history and evolution of this dispute and how this positive outcome was achieved, a more detailed Code 2 has been sent to your private email address.

John Oliver - General Secretary

Authorised by John Oliver General Secretary 
United Firefighters' Union of Australia, Union of Employees QLD