Melbourne parking officers will walk off the job this AFL grand final weekend as the long-running dispute between inspectors and the council continues.
The planned strikes are set to cost the City of Melbourne an estimated $250,000 to $300,000 a day in revenue as Melbourne prepares for one of its busiest weekends of the year.
The industrial action will take place during the grand final parade on Friday and the grand final itself on Saturday, as tens of thousands of people flock to the CBD.
Ty Lockwood, the Australian Services Union (ASU) representative, said the dispute centres on the conditions and entitlements at City of Melbourne.
“We don’t feel the City of Melbourne have been bargaining genuinely,” Mr Lockwood told the ABC.
“They’re not offering a lot and they’re wanting us to give a whole lot. It’s not acceptable to us.”
This weekend’s action follows multiple strikes over the past two months, including a protest walk along Swanston Street that disrupted trams on Tuesday.
In a statement, Mr Lockwood apologised to people affected by the protests, but said it was one of the few ways the union could get City of Melbourne’s attention.
The council said the decision to strike has been disappointing.
Acting chief executive for the City of Melbourne, Martin Cutter, told the Herald Sun the walk off was unnecessary and would not contribute to successful negotiations.
“Similar actions proposed by the ASU recently have failed to generate the necessary support from members and have not proceeded,” Mr Cutter said.
The City of Melbourne has offered a 2.5 per cent pay rise as part of their contract offer to parking officers, however it was rejected in July. – Report and photo by Kyle Standfield