||Issue No. 142||28 June 2002|
Interview: Safe as Houses
Safety: Ten Steps to Safety
History: Staying Alive
Unions: Choose Life
International: Seoul Destroyers
Corporate: Crash Landing
Activists: The Refusenik
Review: Dumb Nation
Poetry: Helping Out The Rich
The Locker Room
Week in Review
Good News from the Pilbara
Go Mark, Go
The Tasmanian State election will be held on July 20. The Tasmanian electoral (Hare Clark) system provides for five 'multi-member' electorates with five House of Assembly members elected from each electorate. The current State Labor Government has 14 members, the Liberal Party 10 and the Greens 1
Unions Tasmania (the Trades and Labor Council) has identified an election campaign agenda comprising the key issues for Tasmanian working people. These issues are grouped under the general goal and theme of "Fairness at Work."
All political parties and individual candidates have been asked to respond to proposals on fair wages, secure jobs, reasonable hours of work and flexibility in working time. Wages are generally lower in Tasmania than elsewhere.
State Governments can play an active role in advocating higher wage outcomes. Unions Tasmania wants the parties to commit to a number of wage and income targets identified by the statewide Tasmania Together process and to making a separate and active submission in support of higher wages during national safety net review cases.
There is a growing division between workers who are in secure, career-oriented jobs and the increasing number of casual and part-time workers whose jobs are often precarious
29.3 per cent of Tasmanian workers are now employed as casuals. Unions Tasmania wants to know how the political aspirants will go about bringing more security of employment to the Tasmanian workforce and ensure that employee entitlements are protected.
Like the rest of Australia those Tasmanians with permanent full time work are working longer and longer hours. All parties have been asked to demonstrate how their policies will combat the pressure to work excessive hours and how flexibility in working hours can be introduced to support those workers with other responsibilities.
A further plank in the Unions Tasmania election platform is legislative support for the rights of worker's representatives in the workplace. Tasmanian political parties have been asked to show how their policies will provide practical support for fairer collective bargaining at the workplace level.
At the 1998 State election Unions Tasmania had a formal agreement with the ALP on what the Government would do after the election. However at this election there is no formal agreement.
On receiving party and candidate responses (or lack thereof) Unions Tasmania will publicise the results to Tasmanian workers.
While the Bacon Labor Government is widely expected to be returned the Tasmanian electoral system has a tendency to surprise. Thus the parties' attitudes to the Unions Tasmania agenda could be critical to the outcome.
Like any Labor Government - union movement relationship we have had our ups and downs with the Bacon Government.
It is now up to each party to demonstrate how their policies will advance the cause of working people.
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