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  Issue No 108 Official Organ of LaborNet 24 August 2001  




.  LaborNET

.  Ask Neale

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Activists Notebook

More ideas, events and fundraisers than you can throw a picket at in this week's activist's agenda.

Fundraiser for Western Sahara

Featuring Babalu, Metro Flamenco and Soiree...

Babalu... this 8-piece band is one of the most popular Afro-Caribbean acts in Australia at the moment

Metro Flamenco...'the hottest flamenco dance ensemble to appear in Sydney's underground scene'

Other music includes Soiree and there' s a DJ as well...

Money raised will be used to bring a Saharawi woman out to Australia on a speaking tour to help gain support for the struggle of the Saharawi people, who have been living in Refugee Camps since 1975 when Morocco invaded their country. Polisario is the liberation movement fighting for Western Sahara's independence.

Thursday 6 September 8pm Harbourside Brasserie

Tickets: $15, $10 students/concession

Enquires: Stephanie Brennan 9320 0042 or 0411 239934 or Natalie Joughin 8204 7251 or 0425 214618

Organised by the Western Sahara Alliance and the Australia Western Sahara Association (AWSA)

The Age of Dissent

The Sydney Branch of the Australian Society for the Study of Labour History has organised a Conference on Social Protest Movements and the Labour Movement, 1965-1975.

The Conference will be held over the weekend 22-23 September, at the Women's College, University of Sydney. It promises to be a memorable and enjoyable event.

Commemorating the significance of the wide ranging social and political movements, and industrial struggles, of the period, the Conference will focus on Sydney and NSW.

Prominent activists in the major mass movements of the turbulent decade have been gathered by the organisers. The panellists and speakers, some 40 veterans of the period, will explain events, and reflect on their long-term social and political ramifications for Australian society.

The program has been arranged into five sessions with eight panels, providing time for introductory talks, questions/comments from the floor, and discussion between panellists and attendees.

Registration fees are $80 for both days; $45 for one day. Concessions are available at $40 and $25 respectively. Registration includes all-day coffee/tea, substantial buffet lunches, and Saturday evening wine/snacks.

Registration: Dr Beverley Symons, Secretary, Sydney Branch ASSLH, 23/68-74

Liverpool Road, Summer Hill, 2130. Enquiries: (02) 9799.6943 or (02)



THURSDAY AUGUST 30 at 9.00 AM to 1.00 PM

The Evatt Foundation/Pluto Seminar exploring the changing nature of the state, its relationship with citizens and the crisis in governmental legitimacy, PRIVATISING DEMOCRACY? GOVERNMENT AND THE CRISIS OF CONSENT will be held on Thursday August 30 (9.00 AM to 1.00 PM) at the NSW State Parliament House Theatrette.

Speakers include Murray Goot, David Hill, Margo Kinston, Ghassan Hage, Christopher Sheil.

At the conclusion of the seminar, Barry Jones will launch the Evatt Foundtion book, GLOBALISATION - AUSTRALIAN IMPACTS edited by Christopher Sheil.

Bookings are essential:Telephone: 02 9385 2966 or email: [email protected]

Free the Refugees Solidarity Tour

Woomera 2001

Friday September 21 - Sunday September 23


Join the Refugee Action Collective trip to Woomera Detention Centre in South Australia to protest at the imprisonment of refugees and asylum seekers, as we go into an election where neither of the major parties

offers a decent alternative to the current system of gross human rights violations.

In the tradition of the Freedom Rides, defy the fear and remoteness which divides those of us living in

Australia from those seeking peace and freedom, who would join us.

Buses will be leaving from Melbourne , Sydney, Adelaide, and Canberra, and other places as plans progress.

Sydney people contact Ian, 0417 275 713 for details.

For Melbourne people, the itinerary is as follows:

Friday 21 September:

Leave in the afternoon for a bus ride to Woomera in South Australia.

Saturday 22 September:

Arrive in Woomera for breakfast. Protest, activities, etc at Woomera Detention Centre for the morning, into the afternoon.

Bus to Adelaide in the afternoon. Tentative plans for a public meeting in Adelaide to help build a refugee activist group there, and to discuss the day.

Spend the night in accommodation, which we will be planning in either billets, backpackers etc, or perhaps a church or school hall.

Sunday September 23:

morning rally and speakout in Adelaide, and bus back to Melbourne arriving in the evening.

In the days following the trip we will organise a public meeting or rally to highlight the experience.

Register via email [email protected], or phone

Giada, 0508 538 916

The cost will be $100 waged, $80 unwaged(including accommodation), but we will be fundraising to subsidise.

Volunteers in Melbourne who would like to help organise things, please contact us (see details below), or come to our regular meetings Tuesday 6pm at Trades Hall, cnr Lygon and Victoria Sts.

Refugee Action Collective

[email protected]

0418 347 374

Public meeting:Stop the GATS attack on Public Education

-Fighting the World Trade Organisation's Privatisation Juggernaught.

Wednesday Sept 5th,

1.00pm Carslaw Bldg, room 157

Speakers include:

1. Ted Murphy - (NTEU National Assistant Secretary)

2. Paul Dwyer - (Academic, Arts Faculty)

3. International Solidarity Collective (Student)

The NTEU, SRC staff, and some student activists have got together to hold a public meeting about the General Agreement on Trade in Services GATS and its effects on Public Education. GATS is very scary indeed. Basically it is a set of legally binding WTO rules that aim to open up trade in services to the global free market. Multinational corporations are eyeing services as multi billion dollar source of profit. Education, health and water services are thought to be the most lucrative, with education estimated to be $2 trillion dollar global market. Investment houses like Meryll Lynch estimate that public education will be privatised over the next decade. GATS will make sure this happens.

GATS will restrict the ability of national governments to fund and regualte public services. Rules include the requirement for government money to be equally available to public and private institutions. The Liberals have already suggested using the voucher system of funding for education, wherby vouchers are redeemable at public or private institutions. Competitive tendering of public services such as DOCS disability services and employment services are all ways of effectively moving government money into the private sector which GATS will enforce.

Regulation of the service sector including education will also be under attack. The service sector is one of the most regulated sectors on the planet, for good reasons - to ensure quality of service. Qualification requirements, proceedures, technical and environmental standards could be challenged if they are considered to be 'trade restricrtive' or 'more burdensome' than necessary. A deregulated service sector in a competiive environment will effect service users as well as workers.

Over 70% of people said they wanted more funding to public health and education from this years election policies. GATS will see and end to that.

Whether you are a hospital worker, council worker, teacher, postal worker, student or a member of the community who uses a service you should be very concerned about GATS. There is much at stake. The service sector employs 70% of the Australian workforce and is the fastest growing sector in the global economy. The effects of corporatisation and privatsation have already been felt across the service sector. Job losses, increased workplace stress, as well as reduced quality, equity and access to important services have occurred in privatised and deregulated industries such as telecommunications, finance and education. GATS will deepen this process.

Come along and find out more and what we can do to STOP the GATS attack.

For more info on GATS See:

Reverse Garbage Art and Design Competition

As part of their 25th Birthday Celebrations Australia's first Re-use Centre, Reverse Garbage, is running 'Junk Love': an art and design competition. It was created to provide an opportunity for artists and designers working with re-used materials to showcase their work; and to promote awareness of waste avoidance and re-use issues.

Reverse Garbage's General Manager Heidi Freeman says 'We'd like to show everyone the amazing things our customers create. Some of our customers are at the cutting edge of contemporary art and design, and we'd like to see that acknowledged in the broader community. We've also put a lot of work into partnerships with industry, and so would like to demonstrate how this generation of designers is engaging with issues of sustainability.'

The exhibition of finalists in November will offer positive and playful solutions to questions of resource re-use and sustainability; and provides a space for the creation of powerful visions from emerging and established professional and community artists and designers.

'Junk Love' offers two major prizes of $500 each, for Art and Design, and Sustainable Design, as well as a host of smaller prizes in a number of categories including visual art, furniture, toys, and Kids creations.

The opening of the exhibition will also launch Reverse Garbage's 25th Birthday, celebrating 25 years of co-operative resource re-use.

Entries are open now and close on Monday 5th November. Please call Francesca Cathie at Reverse Garbage on 02 9569 3258 for entry details.


*   View entire issue - print all of the articles!

*   Issue 108 contents

In this issue
*  Interview: The Man from Manusafe
Manusafe chief Andrew Whiley explains why employers have nothing to fear from the entitlements trust fund.
*  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.

»  Entitlements Just Tip of the Iceberg
»  State-Wide Push for Entitlement Protection
»  Support Builds for Industrial Manslaughter Laws
»  Organiser Assaulted – Police Called In
»  Young Casuals Not Paid Overtime
»  Commonwealth Hit With Criminal Conviction
»  Back Door Bob Does Wollongong
»  ABC IR Memo Draws More Fire
»  Unions Warn of More Deaths in Construction
»  Big Brother Hits Rail Workers
»  Libs Dodge Public Education Forum
»  Westfield Squeezes The Extra Dollar
»  MP's Staffers Fume Over Pay Deal
»  Mat Leave Win for Country Energy
»  No Wonder Wonderland Workers Unhappy
»  Qld's First Major Review of Awards
»  Unions Buck Online Ambush
»  Bras Burned for Burma
»  Two Capps To Cancel Debt
»  Australians Work Too Much, Too Long
»  Activists Notebook

»  The Soapbox
»  The Locker Room
»  Trades Hall
»  Tool Shed

Letters to the editor
»  Waterfront Women's Support Group
»  Banking Lobby Group
»  Love Your Tool!
»  More on Indonesian Workers

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