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Issue No. 318 03 August 2006  

Don't Bank on Costello's Oil Shocker
Did the economy slip on a banana skin or an oil slick?


Interview: A Life And Death Matter
Macquarie Street and Canberra are squaring off over safety in the workplace, NSW Minister for Industrial relations, John Della Bosca, explains what's at stake.

Unions: Fighting Back
When John Howard's building industry enforcer started threatening people's homes, one couple hit the road. Jim Marr met them in Sydney.

Industrial: What Cowra Means
The ruling on the Cowra abattoir case highlights the implications of the new IR rules, according to John Howe and Jill Murray

Environment: Scrambling for Energy Security
Howard Government hypocrisy is showcased in its climate change manoeuvring, Stuart Rosewarne writes:

Politics: Page Turner
A new book leaves no doubt about whether the faction came before the ego, Nathan Brown writes.

Economics: The State of Labour
The capacity of the state to shape the political economy and thus improve the social lives of the people must be reasserted, argues Geoff Dow.

International: Workers Blood For Oil
A new book by Abdullah Muhsin and Alan Johnson lifts the lid on the bloody reality of US backed democracy for Iraq's trade unions

History: Liberty in Spain
Worker Self-Management is good management. The proof in Spain was in Catalania, Andalusia and continues in the Basque Country, as Neale Towart explains.

Review: Go Roys, Make A Noise
Phil Doyle thought he'd find nostalgia, but instead Vulgar Press' new book, Maroon & Blue is a penetrating insight into the suburban mind under stress.


 Ah, Sol

 Telstra Contractors in Bush Raid

 Spooks Go “Nuclear”

 Drivers Under Attack

 Stacks on the Hill

 Advertising Works

 29 Face Secret Interrogations

 Bureaucrats Sit on Wages

 Blue Mountains Fit Through Loophole

 G Spot for Rally

 Chalkies Give WorkChoices An F

 Howard Base Shaky

 Deaf Workers Lose Voice

 Canberra Scratches WorkChoices Handicap

 MUA Hungry for Change

 Vanny Changes Story

 Activists What's On


The Locker Room
Ruled Out
Phil Doyle plays by the rules

Tommy's Apprentice
Chapter One - Tommy and "The Boy"

Westie Wing
Ian West wonders what might happen if the NSW Coalition actually did win power next March at the State elections.

 Bussies Are Tops
 What Was He On About?
 Belly On Balance
 Help Wanted
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Vanny Changes Story

Immigration Minister Amanda Vanstone has been slammed for hypocrisy and labelled the “minister for rorts” after she has turned a blind eye to bosses with their noses in the trough at a South Australian Abattoir.

Vanstone denied there was rorting of the foreign worker visa system, but industry sources say she merely changed the rules to protect T&R Pastoral's abattoir at Murray Bridge, which is employing more than 100 foreign workers on 457 Visas.

Vanstone then admitted on the ABC's 7.30 Report that abuses are occurring.

"She can't have it both ways," says Australasian Meat Industry Employees Union South Australian secretary Graham Smith. "Now we have learned from industry sources that the Minister is negotiating an agreement to water down visa provisions - effectively legalising the rorts we exposed."

"I understand the deal will include the ability to use foreign workers in unskilled or lower skilled jobs that could be done by Australian workers and the ability to use AWA's to set wages for these workers at a rate that is lower than the minimum salary level set by the rules of the visa."

"This is a direct contradiction of the intent of the visa, which is supposed to be used to fill trades shortages on a temporary basis where Australian tradespersons are unavailable in a particular area.

"It is like giving a fox the key to the henhouse."

A DIMA examination of the visas at the Murray Bridge abattoir, the investigation was completed in May but has not been released.

The AMIEU has called on Vanstone to release in full in the T&R report.


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