|Issue No 106||10 August 2001|
Tassie Workers Brew Up a Storm
By Andrew Casey
Tasmanian brewery workers at Cascade in Hobart and Boags in Launceston have been involved in a range of industrial bans and disputes this week as enterprise negotiations at both workplaces grind to a snails pace.
Workers at both breweries will meet on Monday morning with a threat to escalate the disputes hanging over both companies because of the failure to make any reasonable offer to their workforce.
" Our members at both breweries will discuss the possibility of ratcheting up the disputes on Monday," Peter Tullgren said.
The Boags brewery - which was recently taken over by the Filipino multinational brewer San Miguel - is involved in its first industrial dispute in 15 years because the company proposal would see the Tasmanian workers paying for their own wage increases.
Boags brewery workers are angry because the latest, revised offer, from the company actually seeks to reduce the pay offer last made by the company.
The Cascade brewery - which is owned by CUB - is refusing to budge on a pay offer which would see Hobart workers get a pay increase below those of their CUB workmates in Melbourne and Brisbane.
The CUB CEO, Ted Kunkel, who was on his first ever visit to the Cascade brewery site in Hobart this week was greeted with union bans and union members wearing badges saying they were not happy with the company's pay offer.
LHMU Industrial Officer, Peter Tullgren, said the Boags workers in Launceston were being told by the Manila based management that their wage increases had to be traded off for increased working hours and a discounted wage increase.
" Negotiation with Boag representatives - who are being controlled from afar - is always frustrating but it is doubly frustrating when the good industrial record of Boag workers is being put at risk.
" If San Miguel wants to be a good corporate citizen then they must get used to dealing with Australian workers and providing Australian wage standards - they should not expect to force down our wages and working conditions to those of Filipino workers," Peter Tullgren said.
Referring to the separate dispute at Cascade Mr Tullgren said the company should not act as if it was an overseas multi-national manipulating isolated local workers in a colony.
" Tasmanian is part of Australia - we are not a foreign country with foreign workers. The company is refusing to put the same offer to our members as they have put to other CUB and Foster brewery workers."
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005