Margarita Windisch

Government ministers have called on private employers not to sack staff in response to the economic crisis (a call that the company bosses have predictably ignored). Yet the government has been sacking its own workers.
The Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance (MEAA) has accused the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) of bullying tactics and using its coercive powers to attack press freedom, in a statement released on February 27.
On January 21, BHP-Billiton announced the sacking of 3400 workers across Australia.
If there is one thing heading towards a complete meltdown even faster than our economy then it’s Melbourne’s privatised metropolitan public transport system.
News of a pending pay claim by Alcoa power plant workers in Western Australia has unleashed a flurry of indignant calls for wage restraint from corporate media outlets, bosses and the federal government alike.
A group of Victorian trade unions have sought legal advice on the possibility of lodging a complaint with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) against the ALP federal government.
Almost 2000 Victorian TAFE teachers voted on November 25 to continue their industrial campaign for a new enterprise agreement, which will include a further stop-work meeting in February 2009. Teachers from regional centres were joined at the meeting by metropolitan TAFE colleagues.
“If these people can spend millions and millions on sending troops to fight other countries, why can’t they spend maybe a couple of billions just to save people, like ourselves; the marginalised, poorest of the poor. Why? Because we are taking the brunt, we are the victims of these green[house] gas emissions, the pollution made by industrialised countries.”
The Commonwealth Department of Public Prosecution’s (CDPP) formal withdrawal of charges against Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) official Noel Washington on November 28 is a major victory for all workers and unionists.
Gone are the days when the local council dropped you a note in the mailbox, advising of its twice-yearly, free hard-rubbish collection.
More than 380 delegates participated at the sixth congress of the General Union of Saguia El Hamra and Rio de Oro (-Western Sahara) Workers (UGTSARIO) in the Western Saharan refugee camp of El Aaiun in south-west Algeria from October 19-21.
The Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) had egg on its face when all criminal charges against Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) member Brian Shearer were officially withdrawn by the Department of Public Prosecution on September 22.
On September 17, federal IR minister Julia Gillard unveiled Labor’s “new” industrial relations system based on the IR policy it took to the federal election, Forward with Fairness (FwF). But rather than “tear up” Work Choices, Labor’s pre-election promise, its replacement IR system largely preserves it.
Following a strike by Dandenong mail officers in June and an overnight picket by Union Solidarity in September, Australia Post has agreed to reinstate Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union delegate Hemma Lorenz to her original position. The campaign was triggered by Australia Post’s decision to transfer Lorenz to a city facility.
Members of a range of unions protested outside the RACV club on September 25, where the Victorian WorkCover Authority (VWA) announced its end of year financial and operational results. The protest was called by the Victorian Trades Hall Council (VTHC), which is concerned about changes to WorkCover proposed in the Hanks review.
The Australian Services Union (ASU) Victorian secretary, Ingrid Stitt, told Green Left Weekly that Labor’s new Interim Transitional Employment Agreements are a “wolf in sheep’s clothing”. The ITEAs were introduced by the Rudd government to replace the notorious Australian Workplace Agreements (AWAs <17> individual contracts).


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