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Issue No. 193 29 August 2003  

Smells Like Community Spirit
Over the past view weeks Labor Council has been undertaking some focus groups to gauge community perceptions to unions. The result is a massive wake up call for those of us who want a union culture to survive into the 21st century.


Interview: The New Deal
US union leader Amy Dean expands on her agenda to give unions a real political voice

Unions: In the Line of Hire
Unions have lobbied and negotiated in a bid to stem casualisation and insecurity. Now, Jim Marr, writes they are seeking protection through a formal Test Case.

Culture: Too Cool for the Collective?
Young people are amongst the most vulnerable in the workforce. So why aren't they joining the union, asks Carly Knowles

International: The Domino Effect
An internal struggle in the biggest and strongest industrial union in Germany IG Metall has had a devastating wave effect across not just that country, but also the rest of Europe, writes Andrew Casey.

Industrial: A Spanner in the Works
Max Ogden looks at the vexed issue of Works Councils and the differing views within the union movement to them.

National Focus: Gathering of the Tribes
Achieving a fairer society and a better working life for employees from across Australia will be key themes at the ACTU's triennial Congress meeting later this month reports Noel Hester.

History: The Welcome Nazi Tourist
Rowan Cahill looks at the role Australia's conservatives played in supporting facism in the days before World War II.

Bad Boss: Domm, Domm Turn Around
Frank Sartor might have shot through but Robert Domm still calls the IR shots at Sydney City which pretty much explains why the council is this monthís Bad Boss nominee.

Poetry: Just Move On.
Visiting bard Maurie Fairfield brightens up our page with a ditty about little white lies.

Review: Reality Bites
The workers, united, may never be defeated but if recent episodes of Channel 10 drama The Secret Life Of Us are to be believed, this is not necessarily a good thing, writes Tara de Boehmler.


 Iranians Expelled Over Teen Affair

 IR Promises Crash on Motorway

 Telstra Pigs Out on Indian

 Teachers Fight Casual Attitude

 Superstars in EBA Showdown

 Sink One with Billy

 Abbott Asked to Consider Honesty

 Printerís Win Drink Stink

 WorkCover To Take Robbery Seriously

 Power Blackouts Expose Jobs Shortage

 Qantas Woes Set To Soar

 Sports Workers Walk

 Bigger Money Player Equals Job Cuts

 Indonesian Human Rights Appeal

 Activists Notebook


The Soapbox
Fighting Words
Craig Emerson gave what could be the most spirited Labor spray in a decade to the NSW Labor Council this month. Here it is in all its venom.

Out of Their Class
Phil Bradley argues that Australia's education system should not be up for negotiation in the global trade talks.

The Locker Room
The ABC of Sport
Phil Doyle argues that the only way to end the corporate madness that is sport, is to give it all back to the ABC.

Locks, Stocks and Barrels
Union Aid Abroad's Peter Jennings updates on the situation in Burma, where the repression of democracy is going from bad to worse.

 A Nice Letter
 Tomís History Of The World
 Tony Is A Tool
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WorkCover To Take Robbery Seriously

The use of a weapon, and robbery, have been recognised as "serious" by WorkCover as claims resurface that workplace injuries are dramatically under-reported.

From the September 1 NSW employers will be required to notify WorkCover immediately when "serious" incidents occur.

The NSW Labour Council is hoping the new reporting regulations will improve the collection of data on workplace accidents.

"The data that is [currently] collected is appalling," NSW Labor Council secretary John Robertson told last week's Council meeting. "This will allow better data collection and will allow for prosecutions under the WorkCover legislation."

Affiliate unions have also welcomed the changes to the regulations.

"NSW Police have congratulated the government on this initiative," says Peter Renfrey of the NSW Police Association. "There is ample evidence that the number of workplace injuries is dramatically under reported. This system will...ensure that appropriate preventative strategies can be developed"

"It should remove any excuse for employers not complying with their reporting obligations."

Under the new amendments to Clause 341 of the OHS Regulation 2001 serious incidents also include:

- An incident where there has been a fatality;

- An incident where there has been a serious injury or illness such as when a person is placed on a life support system, loses consciousness, is trapped in machinery or a confined apace or has serious burns;

- An injury or illness that causes a person to be unfit to attend their usual place of work for seven days;

- Damage to any plant, equipment, building or structure or other thing that impedes safe operation,

- An uncontrolled explosion or fire,

- An uncontrolled escape of gas, dangerous goods or steam,

- Exposure to bodily fluids that presents a risk of transmission of blood-borne diseases,

- Electric shock that involves a risk of serious injury to a person,

- Any other incident that involves a risk of explosion or fire; escape of gas, dangerous goods or steam; or substantial property damage.

A special WorkCover hotline has been established on 13 10 50 to notify incidents.

Other incidents require the employer to notify their insurer.


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