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Issue No. 183 20 June 2003  
E D I T O R I A L

A Beautiful Set of Numbers?
In the coming week the NSW Government will hand down the first budget of its third term. Few things are certain in politics, but rest assured the budget will be characterised as ‘tough and responsible’.

F E A T U R E S

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.

N E W S

 Task Force Sleeps Through Killing

 Go To Gaol – Do Not Collect $500,000

 Green Pollie in Picket Blue

 D-Day for Media Diversity

 Putting Steel into Government’s Spine

 Fortnight in Killing Fields Anyone?

 Underpaid Worker Fights Deportation

 Truckies Deliver Death Watch

 Job Cuts Caught in Spill Cycle

 Mum Wins Family Friendly Hours

 Allianz Plans Bite the Dust

 Aussies Back Zimbabwe’s Gaoled Strikers

 Boral Faces Stadium Stoush

 Drought Claims More Jobs

 Bridge Chaos Looms

 Activist Notebook

C O L U M N S

Politics
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.

Media
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

L E T T E R S
 Questions for Cuba
 Is Beazley's Popularity a Winner?
 Rank Marchers
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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News

Truckies Deliver Death Watch

By Carly Knowles

More than 100 NSW road deaths have sparked calls to make supermarkets and warehouses liable for the dangerous demands they place on drivers.

The Transport Workers Union has set up a fund to prosecute clients of transport companies that promote unsafe practices that lead to driver fatigue.

It intends to make examples of the worst offenders, hoping this will encourage clients to accept responsibility for demands they place on drivers.

"Even some prominent industry operators, are actively encouraging drivers to breach driving hours, speed and resort to illegal stimulant use" says Tony Sheldon, TWU Secretary.

Driver fatigue was identified as the major cause of almost 25 per cent of truck related accidents. Thirty per cent of drivers working in the long distance industry have reported using illegal stimulants in order to stay awake to make deadlines.

One of the measures suggested by the union to hold clients accountable is "to adopt an enforceable code of practice for the industry including sustainable rates of pay and chain of responsibility provisions."

This will lead to "clients identified as putting drivers lives and safety at risk [being] pursued to the full extent of the law" says Sheldon.

The union expects the main contributors to the fund will be responsible drivers but also, transport employers who are concerned for the welfare of their drivers.

The fund was established in response to an industry body assisting employers back away from their responsibilities to drivers.

Statistics reveal there were 110 truck-related road deaths in NSW over the 12 months to October, 2002.


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