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Issue No. 133 26 April 2002  

The Struggle Continues
While the romantic image of May Day may be one of international struggle to establish a workers paradise, the reality is far more pragmatic and practical.


Interview: If The Commission Pleases
President Lance Wright marks the NSW Industrial Relations Commission's centenary with an exclusive interview with Workers Online.

History: Protest and Celebrate
Neale Towart scours the globe to discover the spirit of May Day online � the celebration of the eight-hour day.

Unions: A Novel Approach
A union office has been transformed into a library thanks to efforts to provide books for children in detention centres, reports Jim Marr.

Industrial: Hare Tony, Hare Tony
Close your eyes and the Mad Monk sounds like a Hare Krishna, but increasingly the world is tuning out from his mantra about IR reform, writes Noel Hester.

International: Never Forget Jenin
Trade unionist Sari Kassis argues the word 'Jenin' now defines Palestinian demands for justice.

Politics: Left Right Out In France
The results of the first round vote for the French presidency have led to mass protests and calls for national unity, Paul Howes reports.

Health: Delivering A Public Health Revolution
Zoe Reynolds travelled to Cuba to discover how Australians are backing a ground-breaking child health project.

Review: The Secret Life of U(nion)s
Tara de Boehmler stumbles upon a juicy trade union sub-plot in the popular GenX TV drama.

Poetry: May Day, May Day
Rapper Swarmy G is one of the finalists in our workers anthem comp with this ode to May Day.


 Shonky Bosses Get Contract Brush

 Kirby Bouquet for Equal Pay

 Deep Pocket Syndrome Stalks IRC

 Court Decision Threatens Thousands Of Jobs

 Safety Summit to Set Accident Targets

 Detention Centre Vets Song Lyrics

 Fat Sheep Dip Into Workers Pockets

 Government Con Drives SA Vehicle Blue

 Dead Worker�s Family Calls for Safety Crime Laws

 Netball Mum Bounces Back

 Aussie Agency Backs War Crimes Call

 Thumbs-up For Union Immigration Role

 May Day Rundown

 DOCS Worker Assaulted In Courthouse

 Queensland Unions Move on Youth Exploitation

 Activist Notebook


The Soapbox
A Humane Under-Belly
Presenting the annual Kingsley Laffer Lecture, Justice Michael Kirby argues that international human rights underpin Australian industrial law.

The Locker Room
The Hidden Culture of Indigenous Football
Brian McCoy argues that indigenous footballers do not just bring thier skills to the game, they bring their culture as well.

Of Shares and Options
It was a week when Rio Tinto faced its shareholders, Ford faced a backlash and a bid to cap US executive salaries failed.

Week in Review
The ANZAC Spirit?
Jim Marr wonders what the ANZACs would have said about our current treatment of the homeless and needy.

 French Connection
 Gold Star Student
 Time for a General Strike?
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Netball Mum Bounces Back

Thwarted netballers, Stacey and Tiffany Wynbergen, will be on court next month following their mother�s reinstatement to infant wear retailer, BabyCo.

Netball mum, Janette Wynbergen, scored a comprehensive win in her ground-breaking Carers' Responsibilities case against the company this week.

Wynbergen, sacked after refusing to work changed rosters that prevented her spending Saturdays with her children, had been forced to withdraw the pre-teen daughters from netball teams in the Bankstown area.

Wynbergen was represented in the IRC by the SDA with Labor Council also appearing because of the importance attached to the case by the labour movement.

Prior to the parties presenting final submission to deputy president, Peter Sams, a deal was struck which sees Wynbergen reinstated to a fulltime position which, according to a joint SDA-Babyco statement, "fully respects" her "genuine family responsibilities".

"The roster will enable Janette to fulfil her carers' responsibilities to her daughters on weekends whilst ensuring that BabyCo can meet the demands of its busiest trading times."

Other terms of the settlement, including compensation, are being kept confidential.

The NSW Labor Council argued BabyCo had "abused and breached" the national award by failing to have regard for Wynbergen's family responsibilies when changing her roster.

Secretary John Robertson said that while carers' responsibilities had received legal recognition it was important that workers felt confident to exercise those rights.

"This matter was an important test case of the commitment of NSW employers to the reality of carers' responsibilities. I am pleased that, in the end, the parties reached a settlement that recognised that principle," Robertson said.

Wynbergen said her overwhelming reaction was relief. "My priority is to go back to work and build a good relationship with them again," she added.


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