News briefs

Issue 

WA Labor attacks CFMEU officials

PERTH — On November 17, the Western Australian Labor government announced that it would be initiating action to strip Joe McDonald, state assistant secretary of construction division of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union, and CFMEU organiser Cam McCullough of their right of entry to construction sites.

The move is the result of an incident on a BCG construction site on November 22, 2002, when McDonald and McCullough attempted to access the site following the collapse of a crane. BCG site management refused access and a scuffle broke out.

WA public sector workers to strike

PERTH — The Community and Public Sector Union/Civil Service Association (CPSU/CSA) has called a 24-hour strike for November 27 to support its campaign for a new certified agreement.

The strike follows a long campaign of work bans, which began on October 14, on unpaid overtime and ministerial correspondence.

Childcare workers rally

CANBERRA — On November 19, 100 childcare workers and supporters rallied outside the Australian Industrial Relations Commission to protest delays in addressing claims for improved pay and career structures. Around a dozen childcare centres were closed or operating on skeleton staff during the morning rally.

Cummins picket continues

MELBOURNE — Members of the Electrical Trades Union and the vehicle division of the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union continue to picket Cummins South Pacific in pursuit of an enterprise agreement.

The picket was set up on October 15 by the diesel mechanics, electricians and storeworkers in response to refusal of Cummins to negotiate employment conditions in the plant.

Supporters are welcome to visit the picket line at Cummins Engine Company, 195 Boundary Road, Laverton North.

Malaysian Airlines picketed

SYDNEY — On November 21, 30 people picketed the offices of Malaysian Airlines to protest against the airline's allowing its flights to be used by the federal government to forcibly deport asylum seekers from Australia.

Speakers included Greens senator Kerry Nettle, National Union of Students women's officer Liz Stokes and the Refugee Action Coalition activist Ian Rintoul. RAC is calling on the public to boycott Malaysian Airlines.

Aged-care nurses' rally

SYDNEY — On November 21, 50 aged-care nurses and supportive patients gathered at Centennial Park as part of the "pink day of action for aged care". The day commemorated one year since aged-care nurses first took simultaneous protest action across NSW to demand better funding and resourcing of aged care, and question why aged-care nurses — who do the same work, with the same responsibilities, with the same skills as registered nurses — are paid less.

Gippsland workers rally

TRARALGON — Addressing a rally of 600 workers on November 19, Gippsland Trades and Labour Council (GTLC) secretary John Parker described the current federal Coalition government as "the worst government ever seen" in Australia. The rally was called to protest the federal government's on unions, education and health care.

From Green Left Weekly, November 26, 2003.
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