|Issue No 109
|31 August 2001
Labor Calls On Abbott To Abide By Convention
Workplace Relations Minister Tony Abbott is under pressure to abide by convention and not make multiple appointments to the Australian Industrial Relations Commissions only weeks from the beginning of a federal election campaign.
"For some weeks now there has been leaks and strong rumours circulating that Tony Abbott is about to make up to 10 sympathetic appointments to the Industrial Relations Commission in an effort to stack it before the election," Shadow Minister for Industrial Relations Arch Bevis said.
"Such a blatant partisan act would be an absolute abuse of convention in the run up to the election. Until now the Howard Government has cut resources to the Commission and treated it with contempt.
"The rumoured appointments due to be made in the next four or five weeks are reminiscent of the actions of Peter Reith, who made several appointments only weeks before being shifted from the industrial relations portfolio.
"In the interests of ensuring the integrity of the independent umpire, Tony Abbott should give an undertaking that he will not make any appointments to the industrial commission this close to the caretaker period that immediately precedes the federal election.
"Any appointments at this stage will be widely seen for what they are - an abuse of convention and a partisan attack on the independence of the independent umpire," said Mr Bevis.
Interview: Union Power
Electrical Trades Union state secretary Bernie Riordan surveys the union movement's troubled relationship with Labor.
International: Spreading the Word
Veronica Apap profiles Kamal Fadel and the battle he is fighting for the independence of his homeland of West Sahara.
E-Change: Training for a Wired Workforce
Education is the entry point into the new economy; but the system still reflects an industrial age view of the world.
Unions: AWU Defends Millennium Train Workers
Mark Hearn looks at how a group of Newcastle workers are setting a new standard in the railways.
Politics: Chatting with Enemies of the State
Brazils MST is the largest and most radical social movement in the Americas. The CFMEU�s Phil Davey drops in for a chat.
History: Struggle and Inspiration
Rowan Cahill argues that it is only through understanding history that we can make sense of the present plight of workers.
Technology: A World Without Microsoft
Heather Sharp argues that all technologies involve political choices and moral values. Computer software is no exception, and it is Bill Gates' choices that dominate.
Review: Let There Be Rock
Kid Rock and Beer Bong, Australia�s Oldest Rock Fans review the week�s music and political events from the safety of the bar stool.
Satire: Tampa refugees ask to go home: "It's less inhumane than Australia"
The 460 asylum seekers on board the Tampa freight vessel have demanded to be taken back to their oppressive homelands, which they now realise aren�t nearly as hostile as Australia.
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