||Issue No. 229||16 July 2004|
The Sins of Our Fathers
Interview: Power and the Passion
Unions: Tackling the Heavy Hitters
Industrial: Seeing the Forest For The Wood
Housing: Home Truths
International: Boycott Busters
Economics: Ideology and Free Trade
History: Long Shadow of a Forgotten Man
Review: Chewing the Fat
Poetry: Dear John
The Locker Room
Boss Goes Off Prematurely
Australia Post carried off the inaugural Tony Award, struck to commemorate Tony Abbott’s support for poor employers, and copped a dishonourable mention last year.
CEPU secretary, Jim Metcher, confirmed he would nominate the company as a 2004 finalist, after helping a new Mum recover six weeks of maternity leave entitlements.
Australia Post caved into a CEPU deadline and countermanded an order by Strathfield Mail Centre chief, Gary Sadler, that would have reduced her leave from 12 weeks to six on the basis that her child had arrived 13 weeks before the date she nominated.
"Gary Sadler directed the entitlements manager to only pay half of her maternity entitlement," Metcher said.
"The woman went through her supervisors, the HR Department and local delegates but Sadler was a brick wall.
"Unfortunately, management on the operational side of Australia Post treats workers without dignity or respect. There are a couple of managers out there whose philosophy is - my way or the highway.
"They are trying to create an environment based on the old Redfern Mail Exchange model when that place was known as one of the worst industrial environments in Australia."
Workers Online has come into possession of management emails that call for recent dismissals to be held over heads of surviving workers.
The first informs the same Gary Sadler that two sacked workers have failed to lodge appeals within the required 14 days.
Sadler immediately instructs managers at the country's largest mail centre: "Please ensure that we spread the word that we have sacked a couple for poor attendance ... Gary."
In a brief memo to "all" on June 28, Sadler announces: "2 staff members at SWLF have been dismissed for poor attendance. Those who snub their nose and continue to register poor and late attendance will suffer the same fate!!!"
Metcher calls this "management by threat". There is, he says, nothing positive or team building in the approach.
He said the union had not tested the validity of the dismissals because the pair had not been members.
Meanwhile, Workers Online understands Australia Post could be severely embarrassed by revelations surrounding the recent death of a long-serving Dural postie.
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