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Issue No. 215 02 April 2004  
E D I T O R I A L

Something Smells
There is something just a little too cute about the NSW government’s discovery of a budget crisis on the eve of public sector wage talks.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: Terror Australis
The Howard Government has just discovered the nation's ports are a terrorist target. The International Transport Federation's Dean Summers has been warning them for years.

Unions: Graeme Beard's Second Dig
Hidden in the Australian Workers Union Sydney office is a mild-mannered industrial officer who once strutted the international cricket stage, writes Jim Marr.

Industrial: The Hell of Troy
On the basis of a couple of hours in the witness box, Building Industry Royal Commissioner Terence Cole described Troy Stratti as "credible". Six men who, together, have known the company director for the best part of 50 years beg to differ.

Organising: Miners Strike Gold
Traditional unions are rediscovering the power of grassroots organising. Paddy Gorman reports from the coal face.

Economics: The Accepted Wisdom
Evan Jones argues that economic policy making has been narrowed and rendered mechanistic and antiseptic.

History: Vicious Old Lady
Despite its Liberal leanings, the Sydney Morning Herald has never been shy of bashing unions, writes Neale Towart.

International: Out of Sight, Out of Mind
Thailand must end its crackdown on Burmese fleeing rights abuses in their military-ruled homeland, according to a Human Rights Watch report.

Review: War Unfogged
Want to go to war but not sure where to start? Look no further than Errol Morris' latest doco-drama for the definitive 11-step lesson plan, writes Tara de Boehmler.

Poetry: TAFE
A TAFE student struggling under the weight of fees shares his wordly wisdom

N E W S

 Gong Points Death Bone at Iemma

 Strip – Howard’s Order to Shoppies

 Workers Victory - We’re Legal!

 Compo Family Exiled to Peru

 Patrick Faces Million Dollar Fines

 Water Quality in Budget Back-Wash

 Feds Dodge Death

 Hard Men Melt Away

 Three Cheers for 36-Hour Week

 Dili Death "Down to Dollars"

 Builder Pleads Guilty

 Maternity Plan: Hard Labor?

 Life – Cambodia’s Grand Raffle

 Thumbs Up for Union Code

 Activists What’s On!

C O L U M N S

Postcard
A Voice for Peace
Palestinian trade union leader calls on militants to lay down their arms while the ICFTU protests harassment of Palestinian union leader.

The Soapbox
The Double Standard Bearers
Nicholas Way argues that when it comes to collective action, the Howard Government has different views depending on whether you are a unionist or a small business.

The Locker Room
The Fine Print
While the result mightn’t be everything, it does make the back of the newspaper more interesting, as Phil Doyle reports.

Politics
The Westie Wing
Ian West crunches the numbers in Macquarie Street and finds virtue in deficit.

L E T T E R S
 War And Peace
 Getting Away With Murder
 Terrorism
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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News

Thumbs Up for Union Code


Holroyd voters have given the thumbs up to union-council agreements protecting workers rights.

Holroyd City Mayor Mal Tulloch has flagged union-council agreements spreading nationally after receiving community endorsement at last month's local body elections.

Holroyd was the first local government to sign up to a joint memorandum of understanding with the NSW Labor Council that sees the council giving preference to companies with "reputable" workplace policies.

"The community has endorsed our use of ethical and reputable companies," says Tulloch. "Everybody supported it."

Tulloch is also pleased that the Federal Government's competition watchdog, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), has signed off on the agreements.

"The ACCC was very reactionary when they first heard of the memorandum of understanding [between Holroyd City and the NSW Labor Council]," says Tulloch. "When they read what it was about they found it very difficult to hold that ideological position."

Two weeks prior to the council election the Holroyd Festival featured a float addressing the issue of workplace safety.

The float, prepared by the CFMEU, featured Sue Baxter, mother of Joel Exner who was killed on a building site in nearby Doonside.

"The float was very well received by the community," says Tulloch. "This is a traditional working class area and people were being very supportive over the issue of workplace fatalities."

Holroyd is also set for an injection of a new union energy with Tulloch being joined on the new council by Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union organiser and local resident Greg Cummins.


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