About 250 people attended a rally on August 4 in solidarity with 55 sacked maintenance workers who had been employed at the Carlton & United Breweries (CUB) plant in Abbotsford.
The workers, members of the Electrical Trades Union (ETU) and Australian Manufacturing Workers Union, were sacked on June 10. They were told they could re-apply for their jobs with a new contracting company, but that their pay would be cut by 65%.
The rally, held outside the CUB brewery, was attended by members and officials from a wide range of unions.
Victorian Trades Hall Council secretary Luke Hilikari told the rally that a number of hotels in Melbourne and Brisbane had banned beer produced by CUB for the duration of the dispute.
Steve Jolly, a socialist Yarra City Councillor, reported that council had passed a motion of support for the sacked workers. The motion included a decision to cancel any parking fines incurred by the sacked workers and their supporters while protesting at the brewery.
ETU state secretary Troy Gray told the rally that beer production at the Abbotsford plant had been cut by 65% since the start of the dispute. He also reported on the large donations made by union members around Australia to help the sacked workers.
[Another rally will be held outside the CUB brewery in Abbottsford on August 11 at 3pm. A fund raising concert will be held the same day at Trades Hall, Lygon St, Carlton, starting at 5.30pm. Donations to support the sacked workers can be deposited directly into the CUB Dispute bank account — BSB 063-626, Account 10629111.]