The end of the year is always a time for reflection. This year, we can look back over a turbulent 12 months when our Union was under attack from all different angles, and be extremely proud of the way we have come through as a stronger and more resilient organisation.
Our Union exists for one simple reason: to protect and advance the interests of 35,000 rail, tram and bus workers across Australia. We are a democratic, grass-roots organisation, run by members for members. We run on tight budgets, but what we lack in financial resources is more than outweighed by the passion and dedication that our members bring to the cause.
And in 2015, that passion and dedication was clear for all to see. All around the country, we have stood firm in our battles against aggressive employers. But a defining feature of the year has been the tremendous solidarity between our branches, divisions and members. Through all the difficulties and the challenges we’ve been able to depend on each other for support.
For me, this year has also brought many highlights. The brave campaign against Yarra Trams and Metro Trains Melbourne showed that we are a genuine industrial force. Getting the ACTU and ALP to back our campaign for ‘Truth in Bargaining’ showed that we have the power to influence policy at the highest level. And our successful National Council and Dinner in Sydney during November showed that we are a united and dynamic union with a clear agenda for the future.
On behalf of the RTBU National Office, I’d like to thank all of our officials, staff, delegates and rank and files members across the country for your efforts and solidarity this year. We wish you and your families a wonderful Christmas and New Year season, and all the very best for the 2016.