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Issue No. 211 05 March 2004  
E D I T O R I A L

Be Afraid
Elections are to be held both here and with our controlling shareholder this year and already we are getting the feel for how the incumbents will attempt to cling onto power: fear spiced with loathing.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: Baby Bust
Labor's Wayne Swan argues that the plight of our aging workforce is only one side of our demographic dilemma.

Safety: Dust To Dust
Failure by authorities to police safety in the asbestos removal industry is threatening the lives of members of the public, writes Phil Doyle.

Bad Boss: Shaming in Print
Delegates from print shops around Sydney will publicly shame this month’s Bad Boss nominee with a rally outside his new Alexandria operation next Thursday.

National Focus: Work's Cripplin' Us
Noel Hester reports on a spin doctors' talkfest, workplace pain, stroppy teachers and IWD party time in the national wrap.

International: Bulk Bullies
An extraordinary five month struggle over affordable health care, by nearly 70,000 Californian supermarket workers, has just come to an end, writes Andrew Casey.

History: The Battle for Kelly's Bush
Green Bans saved a piece of bush before they saved much of the Sydney’s built environment, writes Neale Towart

Economics: Aid, Trade And Oil
Tim Anderson reveals Australia’s second betrayal Of East Timor is playing out before our eyes.

Review: The Art Of Work
Workers and westies are being celebrated as the cultural icons they are thanks to two Sydney exhibitions reminding us there is a world of art in the everyday, writes Tara de Boehmler.

Poetry: Sew His Lips Together
Wondering where the next porkie is going to come from? Resident bard David Peetz knows.

N E W S

 Taskforce "Disgraced" in Court

 Students Take $10,000 Trim

 Truckers Lose Way With GPS

 Jockeys Down by Width of Strait

 Treasury Loses Sight of Trees

 Athens Built on Sweat

 Signing Away Safety

 Fallen Formworker Critical

 Stop or You’ll Stay Blind

 Bracks Spin Machine Towels Nurses

 Trade Deal Fuzzy on Content

 Good Will Still Hunting on Rail

 Developer "Monsters" Safety Cop

 Day Off for May Day

 Activists What's On!

C O L U M N S

The Soapbox
Iraq and Your Mortgage
How high interest rates go will be a key issue in 2004 and if you are looking for a clue, there's no better place to look than the war in Iraq, writes Michael Rafferty.

Sport
Hang Onto the Day Job
Show someone else the money, says Phil Doyle.

Politics
Westie Wing
Ian West shows why Eveleigh Street’s not so far away from Macquarie Street

Postcard
Don’t Give Up the Fight
Get Up, Stand Up is the logo of choice on a popular range of subversive condoms. Ken Davis from Union Aid Abroad reports from Zimbabwe’s second city

L E T T E R S
 Bring Back Bulk Billing
 Crucifying Refugees
 Saving The Planet
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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News

Good Will Still Hunting on Rail


NSW rail workers have taken their message straight to the public in the lead-up to a wage bargaining round that promises to as predictable as an average peak hour train service.

Workers from across the system this week took out newspaper ads and held a conference to brief the media on the contribution successive governments have made to the current rail crisis.

Rank and file workers spoke of shortcomings including:

- failing to invest in rail infrastructure

- failing to train new workers, in particular apprentices and tradespeople

- failing to listen to its own employees about problems in the rail system

- and failing to manage the railways properly, with eight CEOs in the past decade..

"NSW Rail has been structured, restructured, named, renamed, privatised, corporatised, outsourced and massively downsized," the advertisements says.

NSW Labor Council secretary John Robertson said the advertisements sent the message to the public that the workers who keep the system running should not be made scapegoats when things go wrong.

"The truth is this system survives on the goodwill of its workforce and it is just not fair that they should carry the can for poor management," Robertson says.

The issues raised would be part of the enterprise bargaining round that commences at the end of the month.


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