Prez Blog - 11 August 2008

I would like to take the opportunity to thank Australia's decent and professional Air Traffic Controllers and officers in the many associated support roles for their continuing efforts to keep our airways safe despite the lack of resources available to assist them in their endeavours.

Airservices is telling the world that we are only 17 controllers short nationally and that this position will be rectified by the end of this month. For those of us working rosters around the country this is clearly far from the truth. Rosters with vacant lines, no staff to address critical procedural and training issues, a constant barrage of shift changes, and call outs on days off are the norm rather than the exception. This scenario has been steadily worsening for several years yet in the end service reductions and interruptions are somehow, despite all the contrary evidence, the fault of the very people who have been striving to keep Airservices afloat.

Airservices blame "renegades" and imply deliberate attempts to close airspace. In public forums airspace issues and collective agreement negotiations are linked by unsubstantiated allegations. Attempts are made by Airservices to access yet more overtime from the same diminishing human resources whilst simultaneously trying to manufacture disputes before the AIRC. Anything rather than engage its staff to address the real issues. Meanwhile Rome burns.

I would encourage you to maintain your professionalism. Do not allow yourself to be pushed into illegal or immoral action by the goading of people denying that real problems exist. Take pride in the service you are able to provide to Australia despite the many hurdles placed before you. At some stage Airservices will have to do the same.

Robert Mason
11 August 2008

RE: Organisation of the Re-Organisation 

Quite a few members have been attempting to define the real benefits of SDE and in particular asking managers whether they can see the savings. Some managers are certain that the savings are there long term, some say they can't see the savings offsetting the cost. Some simply prefer not to answer the question. Regardless of the truth of the matter, which only time will tell, there are a number of questions we could be asking about the process...

Reality Bites (The Writing on the Wall Pt2)


(First Published April 2006)

 It appears that some people may have misread the last article on this topic as celebrating the loss of staff as Greg Russell continues to excise what he believes are unnecessary positions throughout the organisation. In fact my intent was completely the opposite. My concern lies in members thinking that the restructure doesn’t really affect us and perhaps thinking that we’re not next. At the moment 10 of 11 divisions are undergoing significant structural change and “right-sizing”. To assume that Air Traffic Control as a division will be exempt seems foolhardy at best... 


Which Way is the Wind Blowing? (The Writing on the Wall – Part 3)

In March and April of last year I wrote of “The Writing on the Wall” with respect to the restructure of ATS1At that stage Airservices’ focus was upon developing an efficient structure for ATC. Whether or not the target has been hit is up to history to decide but the recombination of Airport Services and Air Traffic Services is now a fait accompli

The Writing on the Wall (part 1) 

The recent restructure of Airservices may seem a little like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic but most people realise that the previous structure had significant flaws.

Chief amongst these for our members was duplication of infrastructure between Airport Services and Air Traffic Management.