Talks Resume, Stoppage Suspended

Maritime workers, union and TMS to talk as union suspends 48 hours stoppage

In a positive step in the dispute involving Total Marine Services and maritime workers employed by them the shipping company's CEO Glenn Triggs has agreed to meet the Maritime Union's state secretary Chris Cain in an early morning meeting in Perth tomorrow.

"Chris and Mr Triggs talked by phone today and while we are in no way out of the woods in this dispute, the fact that they have agreed to meet and address the central outstanding issues here - chiefly arriving at an appropriate construction allowance - is significant", said National Secretary Paddy Crumlin.

"As a measure of good faith the MUA has agreed to suspend the second 48-hour stoppage which was due to commence at midnight tonight (Monday December 21).

"There has been a deal of publicity around this dispute with the West Australian Premier weighing in too score a few cheap political points and denuded of much understanding about the actual issues involved. The Minister for Industrial Relations Julia Gillard said on the weekend, the place to find an outcome is in negotiation. Hopefully the employers will take her advice this time around," he concluded.