How the SDA won the Broken Hill Allowance

As the union for retail and fast food workers in Broken Hill, the SDA has always fought for the best outcomes for Broken Hill workers.

When Australia moved to the Modern Awards system in 2009, the Fair Work Commission removed the fifth week of annual leave for Broken Hill workers.

The SDA believed this was extremely unfair on Broken Hill workers and fought this on members’ behalf because we know how important this extra week was to workers.

We were the only union in Australia to launch a groundbreaking case to secure a district allowance to compensate Broken Hill workers – including casual workers – for this loss.

While others said we would never win this case, we proved them wrong.

We didn’t back down and put our members’ best interests first and as a result, were able to secure this allowance into the Modern Awards and into recent SDA-negotiated Agreements.

In 2015, the Fair Work Commission planned to remove this allowance – so we fought hard to make sure this allowance would remain in place.

This was a big win and meant that Broken Hill workers have not lost out from moving to the National System.

Thanks to our efforts, Broken Hill workers now earn an extra $0.97 on every hour worked – an amount that increases each July.

This allowance is worth almost double the annual leave amount and has made retail and fast food workers in Broken Hill some of the highest paid workers in Australia.

The SDA continues to fight to protect this allowance and ensure that all workers in Broken Hill get a fair go at work.

If you have any questions about the Broken Hill allowance, call us on 8139 1000.

Not a member of the SDA? Join here.