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Issue No. 261 29 April 2005  
E D I T O R I A L

Lest We Forget
Just four days separate Anzac Day and the International Day of Mourning for Deaths at Work, but in the eyes of our leaders the gap could be 100 years.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: [email protected]
Labor's Penny Wong has the job of getting more people into the workplace and keeping companies honest. In her spare time ....

Unions: State of the Union
Unions NSW secretary John Robertson unveils the annual survey of attitudes of workers to their jobs, thier lives and the union.

Industrial: Fashion Accessories
Jim Marr unpacks the unlikely claim of a suburban house to be considered the New Mecca of the New Right Ö

Legal: Leg Before Picket
Chris White looks at how the federal industrial changes will impact on the basic right to strike.

Politics: Business Welfare Brats
Neale Towart asks why the only form of legitmate welfare seems to be going to the top end of town.

Health: Cannabis Controversy
Zoe Reynolds looks at how drug and alcohol testing is leading to some addled outcomes.

Economics: Debt, Deficit, Downturn
As the indicators head south, Frank Stilwell wonders whether it is the way we do economics that is to blame.

History: Politics In The Pubs
Phil Doyle reports on the increasingly-popular Struggles, Scabs and Schooners day out.

Review: Three Bob's Worth
Doing their best Margaret and David, Tara de Boehmler and Tim Brunero have different takes on the new Australian flick Three Dollars.

Poetry: Do The Slowly Chokie
Workers Online bard David Peetz teaches how workers to dance to Howard's industrial laws.

N E W S

 Employers Desecrate Graves

 Blackadder Bones Boss

 Tights Fail In Flight

 Dick Tracy Booted In Blacktown

 Cops Not Fashion Victims

 Picnic On for Working Families

 Skinny Pay Starves Weight Watchers

 Banks Get Work For Free

 Aged Care Workers Off Their Feet

 Cleaners Clean Up

 VSU Bad for Business

 Unions Urge Fair Go For Timorese

 Activistís Whatís On!

C O L U M N S

The Soapbox
Notes From a Laneway
Mental Health Workers Alliance member Toby Raeburn shares a week on the frontline.

The Locker Room
War, Plus The Shooting
The Socceroos arenít their own worst enemy after all, or so says Phil Doyle

Culture
Life Imitates Art
The jokes have been around for some time about the economic rationalist's approach to the orchestra, writes Evan Jones.

Parliament
The Westie Wing
Ian West takes the secret passage out of Macquarie Street to deliver his take on NSW Parliamentary Committees and other goings on.

L E T T E R S
 It's Criminal
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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News

Banks Get Work For Free


Australian banks are leaning on workers to do unpaid overtime that is worth the equivalent of 30,000 jobs.

Almost half of all finance sector workers do unpaid overtime, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics figures, adding up to almost half a million hours every week.

Based on the average hourly rate in the finance sector, this equates to $13.5 million in unpaid wages per week or $700 million a year.

Of the 132,200 employees who undertook overtime on a regular basis 23,000 would consistently perform more than 15 hours overtime a week.

The 1,171,000 hours of overtime worked each week represents a 19% increase between 2000 and 2003.

"These figures are staggering and reflect the amount of pressure finance workers are under as their employers seek to cut costs and demand greater output from less staff." The union's National Assistant Secretary, Cath Noye said

Last year the ABS revealed that overtime had increased 4% since 2000, to 37% of the workforce.

Just over a third of the overtime workers were paid expressly for those extra hours, with one in ten regularly doing unpaid overtime.

According to the ILO one in five Australian workers put in 50 or more hours per week.

Things Fall Apart

The growing issue of excessive hours will be examined at a special seminar being hosted by Unions NSW.

It brings together leading experts in the fields of ethics, family, work and social research to examine the effects of an increasing workload on society.

The seminar, Things fall Apart: What is work doing to families and community, is set down for the 3rd June 2005 at the Australian Museum Theatrette, College Street, Sydney

For more information, or to RSVP, contact Neale Towart at Unions NSW on 9264 1461, or email [email protected]


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