||Issue No. 286||21 October 2005|
Lord of the Lobster Legs
Interview: Under Fire
Politics: And the Winners Are ...
Economics: The Common Wealth
History: Walking for Justice
International: Deja Vu
Legal: The Rights Stuff
Review: That Cinderella Fella
Poetry: Is Howard Kidding?
The Locker Room
Thus Spake Sydney Uni
Vote 1 Dictator
Buying peace Of Mind
Rev Kev Speaks
Hadgkiss Threatens Protesters
He said thousands of members would defy threats issued by construction industry secret policeman, Nigel Hadgkiss, to attend national ACTU protests on November 15.
Hadgkiss, last week, warned building workers he could prosecute them for "unlawful action" if they chose to join nurses, teachers and others at rallies across Australia.
Rank and file members face $22,000 fines if they leave work to protest against the federal government's radical workplace agenda, while officials, and their organisation, can be slugged up to $110,000 each.
Under new building industry laws, they can be charged with "aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring" a contravention of the Act.
The laws, forced through the Senate by Howard using his newly-acquired majority, are so broad that they can also be applied to members of a range of other unions, including the ETU, AWU and AMWU.
"This is too important an issue to be intimidated by someone who is playing politics on behalf of the Liberal Party," Parker said. "Our people will be there.
"Nigel Hadgkiss will be looked after by his political friends but the majority of Australians have to look after one another. Building workers have always done that.
"Is he going to impose $22,000 fines on hundreds of thousands of people or is he just going to discriminate on the basis of union membership?
"Is he going to fine people who are legitimately sick?
"How's he going to carry out these threats without making an ass of himself?" Parker asked.
The ACTU is organising the national day of action. It is expected to unite hundered of thousands of people across Australia, who will be linked in a satellite broadcast.
Hadgkiss said building workers who got written permission from their employers would not be in breach of the Act.
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