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Issue No. 301 31 March 2006  
E D I T O R I A L

Deep Impact
No the sky didnít fall in, but there were an awful lot of acorns falling on Australian workers this week as John Howardís dream of a workplace without rights became a reality.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: Organising In Cyberspace
Workers Online speaks to the ACTU's Union Organiser of the Year, Greg Harvey from the RTBU, who has been using cutting edge ways to communicate with a blue-collar workforce spread across five states.

Industrial: How Low Is Low
Neale Towart looks at the much hyped link between minimum wages and employment

Industrial: Cloak and Dagger
The Howard Govwernment has begun rolling out workshops to inform employers on how to use WorkChoices. Sean Ambrose sneaked through the doors for Workers Online.

Unions: Bad Medicine
Nathan Brown reports on how Australia Postís dodgy Faculty Nominated Doctor system is leaving sick workers feeling worse.

History: Right Turn, Clyde
Bob Gould believes news of Clyde Cameronís demise may be premature

Economics: Long Division
Kenneth Davidson looks at a successful political strategy

International: Union Proud
A University of California librarian calls for union labels to increase worker visibility

Politics: Howardís Sick Joke
Phil Doyle looks at an attack on one of the great achievements of the union movement

Indigenous: The year of living dangerously
That mob in parliament house seems to be hopelessly out of touch with Indigenous Australia. So much so, that Graham Ring wonders if the House on the Hill is becoming a Ďcultural museumí.

Review: Lights, Camera, Strike!
Mandrake the Electrician has been down to the video store over the summer and rounded up the Top Ten Union Movies of all time.

Culture: News Front
If the owners are selling off papers, perhaps the unions should buy them says Mark Dobbie.

N E W S

 Doctors Orders - Take a Walke

 Teens Changing the Landscape

 Voters Desert Howard

 Electrical Boss Zaps Safety

 Buggers in Office

 Pub With No Beer

 Telstra's Townsville Shocker

 ABCC: Safety a Gas

 Rough Night Pays Off

 Game, Set, Match Building Workers

 Feds AWA Offers No Choice

C O L U M N S

The Soapbox
Australian Fascism
Rowan Cahill critiques Gerard Hendersonís unique take on history

Parliament
Westie Wing
Will Westie's Wings be clipped, or will the Hills Angels repent and deliver?

The Locker Room
The Heart Of The Matter
Phil Doyle rolls up the red carpet and celebrates the death of an old foe

L E T T E R S
 Sing-a-Long Unions
 The Earl Speaks
 Market's Blind
 Hi Guys!
 Let Us Rejoice
 Tom's Bit
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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Tom's Bit


Unison the union which represents the majority of Council workers in the UK has authorized a a series of one day strikes starting on March the 28th 2006.

This is in response to the plans to scale back local government workers pension rights.

The proposal which the union agrees with is:

That the current retirement for local authority workers on full benefits at the age 60 is unsustainable and it be extended to 65, but the Union wants half the savings reinvested for their members.

What has really got up the nose of the union is the fact that better-connected and more powerful public-sector workers have carved out a better deal for themselves. Staff in Whitehall, the NHS, firefighters and teachers will keep their full benefits, but local authority workers face a cut.

In keeping with world wide trends the voting turnout for the ballot was pathetic as we have come to expect of trade union votes. The biggest turnout was among educational psychologists (45%).

What is not surprising is , the turnout from Northern Ireland public employees was just 24% because the return of their ballot forms was hit by ą a strike.

Tom Collins, Emu Plains


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