Australia

In its latest Report of the Committee of Experts on the Application of Conventions and Recommendations, released in 2009, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) has called on the federal government to suspend the operations of the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) and comply with ILO recommendations.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics has announced plans on March 20 to cut 180 jobs over the next 18 months. Meanwhile GeoScience Australia management have told 150 staff, about 20% of the agency’s workforce, that their contracts will not be renewed when they expire in June this year.
PERTH: One hundred students rallied on March 25 outside Perth’s Wesley church to call on the Rudd government to give fair income support for university students, to end voluntary student unionism and to stop the planned deregulation of university funding.
At the Queensland state election on March 21, the Australian Labor Party, led by Premier Anna Bligh was returned with a reduced majority.
Attempts by the Australian Zionist lobby to discourage audiences from hearing visiting Israeli anti-occupation activist Jeff Halper, which included pulling an advertisement from the Australian Jewish News and cancelling a meeting at a Sydney synagogue, only served to gain media publicity for his speaking tour.
One hundred and fifty people protested in Canberra on March 21 against federal government plans to introduce a national internet filter. The protest was organised by the Digital Liberty Coalition.
A protracted industrial dispute between construction giant John Holland and 39 sacked workers at the West Gate Bridge reconstruction project in Melbourne continued on March 27, with a vibrant demonstration by union members and their supporters at the bridge. The workers temporarily called off their three-week community protest at the John Holland worksite after the company finally agreed to enter into negotiations early last week. The workers, however, pledged to continue their demonstrations every morning at the bridge until a satisfactory settlement is reached with the company.
More than 500 people protested coal mining and exports currently underway. Newcastle Harbour is already the world’s biggest coal port.
As the economic recession deepens across the globe, the spectres of economic regulation and nationalism, seemingly slain by the prophets of globalisation and free trade, have risen again.
The detail of PM Kevin Rudd’s election promise of an “education revolution” in higher education is finally coming to light: privatisation, deregulation and increased competition between institutions.

Pages

Subscribe to Australia