For more information, please see our operating system fact sheet and read our Q&A document. It is important to note that the proposed enterprise contract does not replace your individual employment contract, but provides a simple and easy-to-understand safety net agreement for you and our OS teams. The strongest opposition to mining services has occurred in the highly unionized coking coal regions of northern Queensland, where BHP`s central company agreement offers workers higher hourly wages than most operating services workers. In a final decision thursday night, Commission Vice Chair Adam Hatcher and Vice President Anna Booth also said BHP had not obtained proper approval for the two workplace agreements underlying Operations Services. Some employees have provided feedback for representation and are asking us to get in touch with standardized union representatives. Today we met with representatives of CFMMEU (QLD & NSW) and AWU. During the meeting, we indicated that OS is working and that we are aiming for a simple safety net agreement for members of our production team working at BHP`s operating sites across Australia. Our goal is to reach an agreement that gives our team members flexibility and choice, allowing OS to remain cost competitive and continue to grow. Unfortunately, the unions were not willing and reluctant to discuss the content of the agreement or to present proposals during the meeting, even though we had organised the meeting at their request. As a result, we have not been able to engage meaningfully.
OS is listening and we continue to ask for your feedback on our proposed agreement. We will continue to consider your feedback in accordance with our objectives for our agreement. Please continue to provide feedback to your supervisor or through our online information centre at www.bhp.com/OS-EA. "The priority of a new BHP Queensland coal deal will be to maintain existing conditions and improve job security," he said. There were also lengthy discussions on a number of specific proposals previously put forward by the CFMMEU (QLD & NSW). OS and trade union representatives remain largely divided in our positions and objectives for the agreement. Another option facing BHP is to optimise certain aspects of workplace agreements with which the Commission has found problems and then hand them over to staff for another vote that would satisfy the Commission`s desire for a "genuine agreement". A small number of iron ore workers in the Pilbara voted on two registered agreements for workers in the operations department. The FWC Commission agreed with our arguments that the main terms of the agreements were not explained to the workers. Our union has always argued that agreements are unfair because they create conditions that fall far short of industry standards for coal miners, including lower wages with no annual wage increases and the possibility of being relocated to any BHP mine site in Australia.
"Mark Swinnerton left BHP to pursue other career opportunities after leading Operations Services since its inception. Operations Services continues to deliver strong safety and productivity performance in our Australian operations while providing employment and training opportunities in regional areas," a spokesperson for the miner said. "We are not satisfied, for the purposes of. the Fair Work Act that the production contract or maintenance contract was actually agreed upon by the employees covered by the agreements," they said in the decision. The Commission noted in July that it would likely repeal the two operating services operating agreements approved in December 2019 that brought thousands of people into BHP`s full-time ranks who were previously employed by leasing companies and contractors with casual and temporary contacts. Despite further comments from BHP over the past four months, the miner was unable to address the Commissioners` concerns that Operations Services staff were not "better off overall" than those in existing mining industry workplace agreements. OS also reaffirmed its position that it is committed to establishing a simple safety net agreement for our production team members working at BHP`s operating sites in Australia. Our goals remain that we continue to try to reach a national agreement that gives our team members flexibility and choice so that OS can remain cost competitive and continue to grow. However, the decision means that the individual contracts of Operations Services employees are now aligned with the company agreements in place at their workplace. This makes it more difficult for BHP to relocate its employees to new locations. The reforms were fiercely challenged by the unions, which won a victory in November when the Fair Work Commission cancelled two company agreements because they did not have "overall better" mining service workers than existing agreements in the mining industry. After an in-depth discussion of the negotiators` proposals at the last five meetings, most of yesterday`s meeting was devoted to the review of the maintenance contract proposed by OS, clause by clause.
The intention of this exercise was to ensure that OS understands the negotiators` positions on the proposed agreement, to examine where we are about to align and whether we can make changes to reach an agreement on the individual contractual clauses. It is understood that operations Services employs employees with individual contracts, but these contracts must be in accordance with the appropriate company agreement for the place where they work. The architect of BHP`s controversial industrial relations reforms has left the company amid attempts to revive a national company deal for the operations services division, and as BHP prepares to negotiate a new employment contract for its struggling coal mines in Queensland. Senior Vice President Mitch Hughes said the right thing for BHP to do would be to hire OS staff for existing site agreements, but the company has already ruled that out. He said the negotiations will aim to resolve all the issues currently facing OS workers, from pay to transportation to shifts. Today, we met with representatives of cfMMEU (QLD & NSW) and AWU as well as a number of collective bargaining representatives to continue discussions on concluding a production contract for operating services. During the meeting, we reaffirmed that OS works and we are aiming for a simple safety net agreement for our production team members working at BHP`s operating sites across Australia. Our goal is to reach an agreement that gives our team members flexibility and choice, allowing OS to remain cost competitive and continue to grow. At the end of the last negotiating session, the UTA presented its revised position on the scope, so that it is seeking to conclude two production agreements - one for coal and the other for all other mines. One of the representatives of the collective bargaining of employees submitted his proposals on a number of points for the examination of the company. Based on the proposals received so far from the CFMMEU (NSW & QLD) and the AWU, the company has now had the opportunity to review the proposals and provide our responses to them during today`s discussions.