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Qantas grounds its entire fleet over industrial dispute | Adelaide Now

October 29, 2011

The airline made the extraordinary announcement at 4.30pm yesterday in response to its dispute with three unions representing pilots, baggage handlers and engineers, claiming it was losing millions in the ongoing industrial action.

In a desperate bid to resolve the dispute and get Qantas planes back in the air, Prime Minister Julia Gillard late last night ordered an emergency hearing of the industrial umpire, Fair Work Australia. The parties, linked by video in Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra, were arguing late into the night.

If Fair Work orders an end to the action, as expected, flights are unlikely to resume until late today at the earliest. During a 9.30pm press conference, Ms Gillard said that because of “the dramatic escalation of that dispute the government has taken a rare decision to make application to Fair Work Australia to have the industrial action terminated and have Fair Work Australia deal with this dispute”.



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