CPSU rank and file meet
By Bill Mason
BRISBANE — Community and Public Sector Union members met in the City Hall on July 16 and voted against the national management committee's (NMC) move to dump the union's campaign for an Australian Public Service agreement. Following the meeting, 25 rank-and-file activists met on July 21 to discuss the future of the union.
The July 16 meeting — part of a nationwide series — voted by 55 to 32 to reject the NMC resolution, and then voted overwhelmingly in favour of a CPSU National Challenge motion to reaffirm the APS campaign.
The July 21 activists' meeting, called by CPSU state branch executive member Bob Bunnett, drew representatives from a number of federal government agencies and from Telstra to form a rank-and-file organisation "for the purpose of rebuilding the union".
A diverse group of members, including activists from the CPSU rank-and-file groups National Challenge and Red Tape, agreed that the national leadership, headed by secretary Wendy Caird, had prepared the way for a serious setback by refusing to organise a strong, united struggle against the attacks of the Howard government on public servants.
In particular, the loss of the fight to defend the Commonwealth Employment Service had shown that the leadership's reliance on agency-based campaigns opened the way for a loss of conditions in each sector and across the APS as a whole.
The attacks on basic conditions within the Commonwealth Service Delivery Agency and the Australian Tax Office show the danger faced by all federal government employees.
The activists decided to meet again on August 4 to discuss a program of activities, possibly including a news sheet and a public seminar, to launch the new rank-and-file group in Brisbane.
For more information, contact Bob Bunnett on (07) 3223 1458.