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Issue No. 182 13 June 2003  

The Dead Couple
The message from the ACTU’s Future of Work research is that the two theoretical frameworks for understanding work in the 20th century - ‘Harvester Man’ and ‘TINA’ are both dead.


History: Nest of Traitors
Rowan Cahill uncovers a ripping yarn that could redefine the way we look at Australian involvement in World War II.

Interview: A Nation of Hope
Former PM Bob Hawke bemoans the demise of industrial relations but takes heart from the prospect of peace in the Middle East

Unions: National Focus
Noel Hester reports on a soap star rebellion, Howard’s plans to renuclearise South Australia, more historical atrocities in the north, the redundancy test case plus more in the monthly national wrap.

Safety: The Shocking Truth
It’s every power worker’s worst nightmare – and it happened to Adrian Ware. In a flash of voltage, his life changed forever, as Jim Marr reports.

Tribute: A Comrade Departed
From Prime Ministers to wharfies, the labour movement paid tribute to Tas Bull this week. Jim Marr was among them.

History: Working Bees
Neale Towart looks at a group of workers who got sacked so their boss could keep making the Bomb.

Education: The Big Picture
The NTEU’s Dr Mike Donaldson and Tony Brown join all the dots in the current debate around higher eduction.

International: Static Labour
Ray Marcelo argues there’s another side to the recent furore over Telstra’s use of cheap Indian IT contractors.

Economics: Budget And Fudge It
Frank Stilwell argues that Peter Costello’s latest budget plumbs fiscal policy to new depths.

Technology: Google and Campaigning
Labourstart’s Eric Lee argues the latest weapon for campaigning could be the humble search engine.

Review: Secretary With A Difference
Looking for a new job can be hard enough, without having to worry about sadomasochistic bosses and the threat of being spanked for forgetting to cross your ‘t’s, says Tara de Boehmler.

Poetry: The Minimale
The Labor Party leadership is in the news again, inspiring our resident bard David Peetz to song

Satire: Howard Calls for Senate to be Replaced by Clap-O-Meter
John Howard released a controversial policy statement today, arguing that the Senate be abolished in favour of a device measuring noise from the gallery of the House of Representatives.


 Air NZ Grounds Mums and Kids

 Unions to End Casual Affair

 Carr Faces Acid On Job Security

 Abbott Prescribes Dole for Mother of Six

 Cole Batting Zero from Thirty Two

 Labor Insider Makes Mess

 Dust Busters – MUA Sails into Allianz Fight

 Security Forces Come Out Firing

 Women’s Centre Faces Ideological Jihad

 Varsity Casuals Win Wage Increase

 Fortress NSW Protects BHP Workers

 Pharmacists Seek Jobs Medicine

 Iranian Textile Workers Sewn Up

 Unique Union –Uni Partnership

 Activists Notebook


It’s Our Party
Long time union watcher Nicholas Way looks at the changing dynamics between the industrial and political wings of the labour movement.

The Soapbox
Grass Roots
In his Maiden Speech, new MP Tony Burke argues that the ALP’s union links are nothing to be ashamed of.

Opinion Forming Down Under
Evan Jones condemns the mainstream’s media coverage of the War on Iraq and the damage it is doing to our national psyche.

The Locker Room
Location, Re-Location!
It’s all fun and games until someone loses a club, writes Phil Doyle

 Costa Must Be Crazy
 Saharwi Struggle
 Vinegar Hill
 Tom's Toons
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Unique Union –Uni Partnership

Why did a university head of department recently shed some of her clothing at a Union conference? In mortarboard and academic gown, she “stripped” to a “When Provoked, We Will Strike” CFMEU T-shirt and jeans. And proclaimed, “Thanks - to our brand new corporate sponsor!”

This unusual promo advertised a unique partnership between the CFMEU (Qld - Coal Mining Division) and Griffith University.

The union has provided funding to provide four courses of the School of Industrial Relations by distance education - to give a Certificate in IR, which is available for study by any student.

The Certificate which successful students will receive complements more "hands on" delegate and official training provided by the Union.

"The next generation of Union officials don't have the luxury of 20 years in the job, as I did, to gain their knowledge and skills," CFMEU (Qld - Coal) president Andrew Vickers argues. "There's an urgency to fully educate our activists, and ensure they're prepared to meet the challenges that face them".

Vickers pronounced himself a touch uncomfortable that the was dubbed "a corporate sponsor". "We'll have to find a different phrase," he said.

A focus of the course has been supporting students via weekly on-line contact, rather than leaving students to sink or swim. Australian Labour Relations tutor Robin Price has contacted each student (as far distant as Perth and Emerald) every Monday, and talked them through difficulties they're having.

The school's academic staff include labour economist Peter Brosnan (with a long history researching equity issues), David Peetz (with a claim to fame as Workers Online's "resident bard", but also author of "Unions in a Contrary World" and a well-known researcher on individualism/collectivism and union renewal strategies), and a number of others.

With staff member Cameron Allan, Peetz devised the course Workplace Industrial Relations.

Head of School Janis Bailey says the partnership is a unique one. "Nowhere else in Australia has a union provided funding in this way," she said. "It has enabled us to reach out to regional areas of Queensland, and hopefully to the rest of Australia as the Certificate becomes better known. The CFMEU's funding stands to benefit other students - hopefully many more".

The Certificate contains courses such as Labour Law and Negotiation, which both operate in the coming semester, starting in late July.

The Certificate is open to everyone, and is suitable for front-line and middle management staff as well as unionists.

You can find out more about Griffith's Certificate of Industrial Relations by visiting the website: (and follow link to Courses and Programs).


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