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Issue No. 213 19 March 2004  
E D I T O R I A L

Pay For View
While the ABS latest figures show union density is stable, behind the headline rate of 23 per cent lie some interesting trends.

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

 "Grubs" Derail Revolution

 Blackouts Hit Sydney

 Pig-Out at Restaurant

 Smith’s Charity Begins At Work

 Air Rage Set To Soar

 Boxers Union Lands First Blow

 Drug Tests On Hold

 "Anarchy" Warning from Builders

 Burmese Generals at it Again

 Sugar: Sweet Taste of Survival

 Workers Endorse "User Pays"

 State Water, Forests Face Sell-Off

 Pirates and Ports for Classroom

 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
 Grubby Poseur
 Militancy
 Tom On Drink
 Howard Screws Vets
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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News

Workers Endorse "User Pays"


A major test case looms after the Electrical Trades union announced this week it would act on member demands to enforce bargaining fees on non-union members within the electricity industry.

The ETU has inserted bargaining fees in more than 25 agreements, authorising the union to charge a fee to non-members who benefit from union-negotiated agreements.

ETU NSW secretary Bernie Riordan says there is overwhelming support for bargaining fees amongst his union's membership.

"Our members can not see the justice in non-members benefiting from the union's hard work and so they have taken matters into their own hands and endorsed the 'fee for service' clauses," Riordan says.

"The union is now enforcing the clauses and have levied bargaining fees against a number of non-members who have been happy to accept their union-negotiated pay rise.

"This is a market solution to the problem of some workers not being prepared to pay their way when it comes to negotiating wages and conditions.

"Our members have endorsed the user pay principle - where a majority of workers vote that bargaining fees should apply, the union is authorised to charge non-members a fee for their pay rise.

Riordan says the ETU is now planning to run a test case to allow for the enforcement of the fees across the entire power industry.


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