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  Issue No 12 Official Organ of LaborNet 07 May 1999  

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News

Shaw Unveils Second Wave


NSW Industrial Relations Minister Jeff Shaw has unveiled his plans for industrial relations reform including freeloader legislation, new controls for labour hire companies and rights for unions to be a party to non-union agreements.

Details of proposals amendments to the Industrial Relations Act 1996 were circulated to members of the Industrial Relations Consultative Committee this week. The IRCC includes trade union and employer reps.

Proposals include:

- Introducing agency fees to be levied on non-union members where a trade union negotiates a pay rise. This would involve a provision in the enterprise agreement to this effect, which would need to be voted on by a majority of workers affected. The IRAct would need to be changed to explicitly allow such a provision.

- Forcing labour hire companies to pay employees the same rates and conditions as those of the host company. This would mean that labour hire companies would not be able to pay its workers at a lower rate than provided in the enterprise agreement covering the workplace they are placed in.

- Reversing the onus of proof in victimisation cases to rest on the employer or industrial organisation who is alleged to have breached the provisions.

- Strengthening protections for injured workers against dismissal to the full period they receive accident pay. This plugs a gap left by the federal award-stripping process.

- Increased responsibilities on principal contractors for the actions of sub-contractors. It is also proposed to give the IRC the power to set minimum rates for industrial contractors, to target the problem of "sham" contracting to avoid employer obligations.

- Allowing unions to be a party to non-union enterprise agreements, with the union with coverage having the right to appear at the Commission proceedings to approve the agreement.

- Giving union officials the right to enter residential premises, to assist with the policing of outworkers.

Following the IRCC consultation process, Shaw is expected to introduce the amendments into the upcoming session of Parliament.


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*   Issue 12 contents

In this issue
Features
*  Interview: The Call of the Wild
We meet a union organiser whoís taking the union message into the call centres.
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*  Unions: After the Gold Rush
Call centres are the boom industry and governments everywhere are touting them as major job creators - particularly in regional areas.
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*  History: From Steam Trains to Information Superhighways
A new project is dedicated to promoting the heritage of the Eveleigh railway workshops.
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*  Work/Time/Life: This Working Life: Issue #1
The debut issue of the ACTU's new monthly bulletin for it's Working Time and Employment Security Campaign.
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*  International: British Unions Halt Membership Decline
Union membership has stopped falling in the UK for the first time in 18 years, suggesting that unionsí increased committment to recruitment and organising is starting to pay off.
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*  Review: Cold Warriors' Secrets Exposed
NSW Attorney General Jeff Shaw looks at two books that lift the lid on Cold War espionage.
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News
»  Push for Decent Call Centres
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»  Shaw Unveils Second Wave
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»  Union Raises the Roof for Beryl
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»  Cotter Withdraws Currawong Standover Claims
*
»  Reith Second Wave Will Prolong Industrial Disputes
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»  Itís Rio Telstra -- Union Braces for Attack
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»  Fears of AWA Push in State Rail
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»  Age Tele-Centre Seeks Pay Equity
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»  Advocate Ads to be Referred to Auditor-General, ACCC
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»  Labor Council to Stage Pre-Drug Summit
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Columns
»  Guest Report
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»  Sport
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»  Trades Hall
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»  Piers Watch
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Letters to the editor
»  Wran Wrong on Wrepublic
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»  Digging the Dirt-Digging
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