||Issue No. 152||13 September 2002|
The Legacy of 11/9
Interview: Still Flying
International: President Gas
Politics: Australia: A Rogue State?
History: Levelling September
Unions: Welfare Max
Bad Boss: Welcome to Telstra!
Health: Fat Albert: The Grim Reaper
Poetry: A Man From the East And A Man From The West
Review: The Sum Of All Fears
The Locker Room
Week in Review
The CFMEU Race Debate #2
Keeping it Clean
Sue the Leaders?
Cole Exposed By Immigration Scam
Cole was alerted to the situation at De Lorenzo Ceramics, Baulkham Hills, during testimony by CFMEU NSW secretary, Andrew Ferguson, in June.
He assured Ferguson the situation would be dealt with but after three frustrating months the CFMEU and Labor Council took the matter direct to Immigration Minister Phillip Ruddock.
Cole's failure to follow through underlines CFMEU bias allegations that will go before the Federal Court in Sydney, next month.
Throughout its time in Sydney, the Commission vigorously pursued anti-CFMEU allegations, often from dubious sources, while ushering hard evidence of immigration rorts, safety breaches, tax evasion and systematic employer corruption through to the keeper.
Before hearing evidence on the matter, Cole went on record saying that employer abuse of illegal immigration "would appear to be insignificant".
On the final day of his first session in Sydney Immigration officials rounded up 15 Korean and Chinese illegals employed by Modern Drywall at Waitara.
Last week's raid on De Lorenzo's factory showroom netted five alleged Korean illegals and another outpaced immigration officers in a foot race across surrounding paddocks captured by television news crews.
Angry union officials insist the six-person De Lorenzo haul was "merely the tip of the ice berg".
"They've got a lot more illegals and they use them, deliberately, to slash wages and conditions, and as strike breakers," the CFMEU's Phil Davey told Workers Online.
"These people are paid 50 percent of the going rate and they are forced onto sham sub-contracts that allow company principals to stand in front of the media and claim they are not the employers.
"This sort of set-up is not unusual in the Sydney construction industry but the Royal Commission doesn't want to know."
Davey flagged a heightened union campaign against De Lorenzo, starting next week, in a bid to finish the job started by DIMA.
"We're sensitive about this whole issue because our union has been to the forefront of opposition to the Government's tough stance against asylum seekers," Davey added.
"But the way these people are used by De Lorenzo, and companies like them, is a threat to every building worker in Sydney. They win contracts because they undermine wages, conditions, superannuation, workers compensation, insurance and safety."
Interestingly, De Lorenzo uses a mix of legal and illegal Koreans. When the unionised workforce struck for industry standard wages and conditions in March, it was the illegals who undermined the action.
Davey said the ongoing campaign was at the insistence of legal Korean immigrants "sick and tired" of having their families' living standards undercut.
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