|Issue No 108||24 August 2001|
Organiser Assaulted – Police Called In
A Sydney builder faces criminal charges for allegedly assaulting a building union official after he attempted to speak to workers on site this week.
CFMEU southern organiser Joe Brcic was the victim of the attack last Monday, when he visited the Engadine site of JCS Developments in response to an anonymous complaint about sub-standard safety.
Speaking to Labor Council delegates, Brcic recounted how company director John Curtis had verbally abused him and then drove a car at him, pinning him to a wall.
Following the attack workers placed a picket on the site that was later lifted when the matter was brought before the Industrial Relations Commission.
A complaint has also been lodged with the police. Brcic said Curtis is refusing to cooperate with inquiries but he is expected to be summonsed to face charges.
Brcic is facing a counter summons for assault at the instigation of JCS Development over a separate and earlier incident in March. Ferguson says he's confident that Brcic will be cleared.
Brcic - who is expecting a child within days - says the attack follows several attempts to enter the site to speak to workers. This includes being refused access to brief workers during the recent WorkCover campaign.
Not the First Time
CFMEU state secretary Andrew Ferguson says it is not the first run-in the union has had with JCS Developments.
HE says the assault follows an assault last year on CFMEU official David Kelly who was head-butted on a different site of the same builder, and a separate assault on OHS coordinator Brian Miller.
Ferguson says there is widespread non-compliance on the sites with statutory requirements such as payroll tax, group tax, workers compensation and superanuation. There are also concerns about site safety and breaches of environmental laws.
"The safety on the sites is sub-standard and represents a serious threat to the health and safety of not just the workforce but also the members of the public."
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E-Change: 2.4 The Skeptic’s Response
In this round-table discussion, Noel Hester leads the charge against the argument that globalisation and change are inevitable.
Politics: No Hand Idle
Whitlam Institute director Peter Botsman finds much to agree with in John Howard's social coalition for welfare delivery.
Unions: Slavery and Struggle
A battle with all the elements of the infamous waterfront dispute is being played out in Charleston, South Carolina:
International: Postcard from Santiago
The CFMEU's Phil Davey meets up with Communist Party cadres in Chile who led the underground resistance to Pinochet.
History: Race and Australian Labour.
Australian unionists have long been questioning notions of a “White Australia”, even before the colonies united with it as the central feature.
Economics: Global Regulation
Public sector unions from around the globe are taking the first steps to work internationally against the deregulation agenda.
Satire: Niche Identified in Left-Wing Publications Market
A marxist-feminist activist has discovered a gaping hole in the lucrative left-wing publications market.
Review: The Fight for Equal Pay
In this extract from her new book, Zelda D'Aprano looks at the contribution Kath Williams made to the struggle for equality.
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005