After the Action
After a National Week of Action that has had everything from mass rallies in all capital cities to IR chat rooms opening on the Vogue Magazine website it’s fair to say that the first objective of this campaign – to raise public awareness – has been achieved.
Interview: Battle Stations
Opposition leader Kim Beazley says he's ready to fight for workers right. But come July 1, he'll have to be fighting by different rules.
Unions: The Workers, United
It was a group of rank and filers who took centre stage when workers rallied in Sydney's Town Hall, writes Jim Marr.
Politics: The Lost Weekend
The ALP had a hot date, they had arranged to meet on the Town Hall steps, and Phil Doyle was there.
Industrial: Truth or Dare
Seventeen ivory towered academics upset those who know what is best for us last week.
History: A Class Act
After reading a new book on class in Australia, Neale Towart is left wondering if it is possible to tie the term down.
Economics: The Numbers Game
Political economist Frank Stilwell offers a beginners guide to understanding budgets
International: Blonde Ambition
Sweden can be an inspiration to labour movements the world over, as it has had community unionism for over 100 years, creating a vibrant caring society, rather than a "productive" lean economy.
Training: The Trade Off
Next time you go looking for a skilled tradesman and can’t find one, blame an economist, writes John Sutton.
Review: Bore of the Worlds
An invincible enemy has people turning against one another as they fight for survival – its not just an eerie view of John Howard’s ideal workplace, writes Nathan Brown.
Poetry: The Beaters Medley
In solidarity with the workers of Australia, Sir Paul McCartney (with inspiration from his old friend John Lennon) has joined the Workers Online resident bard David Peetz to pen some hits about the government's proposed industrial relations revolution.
Don't Get Angry, Get Organised
Feds Threaten Hardie Battlers
Beasts of Bourbon Play Dog
Churches on Workplace Mission
Unions Are The New Black
Muster Has Bosses in Fluster
Workers Flood to Protests
Official: Libs Don’t Know Own Laws
Schools Out For Uni Bosses
IR Campaign Taxing Andrews
Air Safety at Risk
Carr Runs Over Lib Laws
Aga Khan Workers Gaoled
Activists Whats On!
State of the Union
Unions NSW secretary John Robertson lifts the lid on ‘The Nine Myths of Modern Unionism’
The Locker Room
Phil Doyle trawls the murky depths of tawdry sleaze, and discovers Rugby is behind it all.
To Hew The Coal That Lies Below
Phil Doyle reviews Australia's first coal mining novel, Black Diamonds and Dust.
Workers Give In FNQ
The Westie Wing
Our favourite State MP, Ian West, reports from Macquarie Street that the Premier is all the way with a State Commission.
Power and the Passion
Mao and Then
The Third Way Hits A Dead End
Unfair For All
What Is To Be Done?
Black Hawk Up
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Labor Council of NSW
Vic Trades Hall Council
IT Workers Alliance
Unions on LaborNET
Beasts of Bourbon Play Dog
The Housing Industry Association (HIA) has locked its doors on the family of a 17-year-old apprentice, who was paid in bourbon.
Mark McGrath, who was employed by the HIA on an AWA (Australian Workplace Agreement), was bought four cans of bourbon by a contractor on the way home from work to make up for unpaid overtime.
When McGrath, his father and co-workers went to HIA's Sydney headquarters to demand answers the doors were locked.
McGrath signed an Australian Workplace Agreement with HIA after his previous employer went belly up.
The contract with HIA, which has a policy of forcing apprentices onto AWAs, took away McGrath's rights to overtime and rostered days off.
"I didn't know what an AWA was or even know I was signing one," McGrath said.
His father said it left a sour taste in his mouth to find that his son's bosses were paying him in alcohol.
"How many other apprentices are out there in the same situation?" he asked.
Unions NSW secretary John Robertson said dodgy workplace practice would be something Australia saw more of with the Government encouraging AWAs.
"If John Howard pushes these laws through even more workers are going to find themselves exposed to this kind of exploitation, this sort of pressure, this sort of intimidation by employers to sign individual contracts," Robertson said.
The Housing Industry Association employs about 500 apprentices on individual contracts. It is a key backer of Howard's workplace relations campaign and was an active supporter of the discredited Cole Commission into the Building and Construction Industry.
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