Casino workers continue campaign
By Bronwen Beechey
ADELAIDE — Workers at the Adelaide Casino are continuing their campaign for a collective workplace agreement, despite harassment and intimidation from management.
The workers, members of the Australian Liquor, Hospitality and Miscellaneous Workers Union (LHMU), held a 72-hour strike over the New Year weekend, in protest at management's attempts to pressure workers into signing individual agreements.
According to LHMU South Australian branch president Anne Drohan, the action was very successful. A majority of workers took part and forced the casino to close some of its operations.
Since the strike, the LHMU has taken the issue to the Federal Court, claiming that the casino is in breach of the Workplace Relations Act by pressuring members to sign individual agreements.
The casino has appealed against a decision in September by the full bench of the SA Industrial Relations Commission, which found that, following earlier industrial action by the casino workers, the company had discriminated against union activists by rostering them onto less well-paid shifts. The appeal decision is due on January 19.
Drohan told Green Left Weekly that although a few workers had signed individual agreements, the majority remained solid, despite harassment of union activists by management.
She described an incident in which one delegate was told by management that she was being suspended because her hair showed too much "regrowth". The suspension was withdrawn after the union threatened to notify a dispute.