Building workers strike over pay claim
By John Nebauer
BRISBANE — More than 3000 CFMEU and BLF members voted to strike at a mass meeting in Brisbane on February 22. The strike, which is scheduled to last until midnight on February 26, is over a 21.5% wages claim.
The increase was to include 15% by December 1995, and the full 21.5% by December 1996. The Queensland Master Builders Association had offered 14% of the total award rate. The log of claims also included an increase in the Building Unions Superannuation of $10 per week and increases in redundancy payments and site allowances.
The unions involved are also demanding that workers' safety representatives be given the authority to have work stopped in unsafe areas until safety matters are resolved to the satisfaction of the site Workplace Health and Safety Committee.
Officials told the mass meeting that the only increase received by members recently was the $8 safety net increase. BLF state secretary Greg Simcoe told the rally that the MBA had been "robbing its employees for the last two years". He said that the campaign had to "be fought builder by builder" so that all employees receive the same award rate.