Bank rejects inaccurate SMH heading

12 August 2004

The following letter has been sent to the Editor of the Sydney Morning Herald.

Your headline, CBA shares spoils, berates staff, (Aug 12) not only misrepresents the comments made by the Bank’s CEO, David Murray, it cannot be justified by your accompanying report. The comments at the Annual Results media briefing were critical of the Financial Sector Union, not Bank staff. What Mr Murray said was, "What I am discouraged about is that the FSU is not exercising leadership of its members in the same way as we are exercising leadership of our people towards service of our customers. The FSU's approach really has been to denigrate the service that our staff are working flat out to improve every day."

To put things into perspective, less than ten percent of staff have chosen to take part in the union’s recent call for rolling stoppages (and less than two percent of call centre staff). Although union action has been aimed at causing maximum disruption to customers, the Bank has been able to keep our branches open and provide normal banking services. We thank our staff for their continued commitment to providing customers with service.

Bryan Fitzgerald
General Manager, Group Corporate Relations