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Issue No. 176 02 May 2003  

Solidarity Forever
Another May Day, another year gone, another year to look back on our history and celebrate the past and talk about how we can make our movement strong again.


Interview: Staying Alive
CPSU national secretary Adrian O'Connell talks about the fight to keep the public service - and the union movement - alive.

Bad Boss: The Ultimate Piss Off
Wollongong workers on poverty-level wages are losing up to $5000 for taking toilet breaks, according to the union representing staff at a Stellar call centre.

Industrial: Last Drinks
Jim Marr looks at the human cost of the decision to close Sydney�s Carlton United Brewery

National Focus: Around the States
If Tampa told us that John Howard circa 2003 is the same spotted rabid dog from 1987, this week�s assault on Medicare confirms it reports Noel Hester in this national round up.

Politics: Radical Surgery
Workers are vitally interested in Medicare, not least because they traded away wage rises to get it. Now, Jim Marr writes, the Coalition Government is tearing apart the 20-year-old social contract on which it was founded.

Education: The Price of Missing Out
University students and their families will pay more for their education following the May Budget, writes Tony Brown.

Legal: If At First You Don't Succeed
Love is wonderful the second time around, goes the famous torch song. But is the same true for legislation? Asks Ashley Crossland

History: Massive Attack
Labour historian Dr Lucy Taksa remembers the general strike of 1917 to put the recent anti-war marches into perspective

Culture: What's Right
Neale Towart looks at a new book that looks at the failings of the Left, while reasserting the liberal project

Review: If He Should Fall
Jim Marr caught Irish folk-rock-punk legend Shane MacGowan at Sydney�s Metro Theatre. He was surprised but not disappointed.

Poetry: If I Were a Rich Man
Through a distortion in the time-space continuum, we have found a recording showing how people a few years into the future will deal with health care.

Satire: IMF Ensures Iraq Institutes Market Based Looting
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has agreed to monitor the Iraqi economy to ensure that the reintroduction of looting into the economy conforms with free-market theory.


 Mystery Men Behind Pan Bungle

 Charities Brace for Medicare Backlash

 Court Throws Out Cole Prosecutions

 Child Actor Dodges Broken Voice

 Rio Tinto: $40 Million for Boss, Eviction for Workers

 Child Care for Oldies Too

 Winning Poster Shouts at Freeloaders

 May Day Tragedy Claims Union Lives

 Westfield Cleaners to Down Mops

 Question Marks Over Nursing Home

 Burn Payout Highlights Compo Fears

 Costa Blows Whistle on Canberra Raid

 Hoops Bet on National Body

 Tear Us Down, Buttercup

 Activist Notebook


The Soapbox
What May Day Means to Me
Reader Marlene McAlear penned this tribue to May Day and worker solidarity.

The Toast
Labor Council secretary John Robertson's toast to the annual May Day dinner in Sydney.

The Locker Room
The Numbers Game
In life there is lies, damned lies and sporting statistics, says Phil Doyle - but who�s counting.

Brukman Evicted
ZNet's Marie Trigona reports from the streets of Argentina in the rundown to last week's presidential election.

The Costs of Excess
Some tall business poppies had their heads lopped this week as the laws of economic gravity applied their always chaotic theory.

 Is Labor History?
 Bob Gould Sprays Gerard Henderson
 War and Peace
 A Strange Light
 A Little History
 Does It Have To Be?
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Letters to the Editor

Does It Have To Be?

email: [email protected]

country: Australia

State: NSW

message: Bad Bosses in call centres - does it have to be this way?

I would like to find out if the strategies all bad and bullying bosses employ to build their empire is written down somewhere because they all seem to follow the same strategies ie intimidate and embarrass quieter employees who they know won't answer back and will suffer in silence, employ and promote friends and siblings of friends, deny holidays dates to some employees while others (drones) get what they want, allow breaks for their drones but monitor everyone else very closely and discipline over very minor breaches whilst their drones can party on in full view, have late lunches, be late for work and leave early etc with no penalty, give others warning letters over very minor infractions whilst her drones can do what they like and never receive one, not publish rules so she can interpret them any way she wants, keep changing lunch hours so people are inconvenienced and can't sit with each other, offer easy jobs and variety to her drones and have no time limit on them so !

they can take a week to do something another could do in 2 hours, give her drones jobs they are not qualified for and therefore need heaps of training when others in the office have the skills but are never given the opportunity, and if it ever comes to a complaint or confrontation between her drone/s and another employee/s, take the side of the drone/s and dismiss the other employee, even blame them for the problem. It goes on, but as they all seem to work the same way, can someone tell me what type of management style is that and is there a book on it. It takes quite a bit of inner strength to decided to stand up for your rights in such a climate and if you do, you normally get 'the treatment' for a few weeks after. Having witnessed this happening to others, it took a while to stand up for my rights after a female team leader had been sexually harrassing me for months - but I was blamed for being insensitive for sending her an email asking her to stop and naturally HR t!

hought it safer and wiser for the company to support the teamleader and the manager.

I would love to know the rules so I can educate myself and others how to lessen their control and bullying.




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