Federal Government must return stolen RATs to transport workers

The Rail, Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) today demanded that the Federal Government return all Rapid Antigen Testing (RAT) kits it has taken from transport operators immediately.


RTBU National Secretary Mark Diamond said the health of rail, tram and bus workers shouldn’t be sacrificed in order to make up for Scott Morrison’s failure to do his job.

“The Federal Government forgot to order enough vaccines, and now it has forgotten to order enough RAT kits, so it has resorted to pinching the RAT kits ordered by others.

“At a time when our national supply chains are falling apart, and transport workers are being told to return to work even if they are a close contact, it is astonishing that RAT kits meant for those workers are being confiscated at our ports.

“RAT kits should be provided free to transport workers – but at the moment workers are struggling to access testing kits at all.

“Transport companies are doing their best to secure their own supplies, but they are not being helped by these extraordinary interventions by the Federal Government.”


The Queensland Government has stated that 20,000 RAT kits were ordered by QR, but the shipment was requisitioned at Botany Bay - apparently at the instruction of the Federal Government. The RTBU understands that at least one other transport operator has also had a shipment of RAT kits confiscated.

“Transport workers are doing a heroic job in keeping our national supply chains going and our cities moving, but they are being treated with absolute contempt by the Morrison Joyce Government.”