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Issue No. 322 01 September 2006  
E D I T O R I A L

Justice, Applied Liberally
To think, Phillip Ruddock used to be a liberal.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: Australia’s Most Wanted
The ACCC is the latest state agency to turn its guns on the construction union. National official, Dave Noonan, discusses the implications.

Industrial: The Fox and the Contractor
With new laws looming for “independent contractors”, Foxtel subbies have had the carpet pulled from under their feet, writes Nathan Brown.

Unions: Industrial Wasteland
A group of inner-Sydney veterans appear to be working to strip their families of retirement incomes. Jim Marr records their desperation.

International: Two Bob's Worth
German and British workers are participating in business decisions while WorkChoices locks Australians out of the conversation, writes Anthony Forsyth.

Economics: National Interest
John Howard claimed that interest rates would always be lower under a Coalition government than under Labor, Neale Towart crunchess the numbers.

Environment: The Real Dinosaur
Economic ignorance remains at the top and the critics are oblivious says Sol Power

History: Only In Spain?
The experiences of self management during the Civil War have been the one positive factor to come from that tragic event, and the Mondragon Cooperative Corporation thrives today.

Review: Clerk Off
Nathan Brown draws solace from some fellow social misfits.

N E W S

 Boss Gives Dad the Finger

 Amber's Law Pulps WorkChoices

 Westfield Flogs Good Deal

 Building Workers Spooked

 Bankers to Train Assassins

 Astroboy Blasts Off

 First Global Deal Docks in Germany

 Bans Stop the Press

 Deportation for Pay-To-Work Tradesman

 Telstra in Bush Bloodbath

 Boss Punts Assaulted Teen

 Ballots Stuffed By WorkChoices

 Howard in a Spin

 Extras – The Waterfront.

 Activist's What's On!

C O L U M N S

Legends
Westie Wing
MLC Ian West ventures beyond Macquarie St and into the desert of the eco rats.

The Soapbox
Testing Times
Former RLPA secretary and Newcastle Knights prop, Tony Butterfield, fires up over dawn raids.

Obituary
Dare to Win
The union movement has lost an inspirational leader of working men and women, writes Jeana Vithoulkas

Fiction
Tommy's Apprentice
Chapter Two - Tommy’s Tale.

L E T T E R S
 Please Don’t Go
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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News

Amber's Law Pulps WorkChoices


A Sydney schoolgirl who stood up to her boss has scored for teenagers across NSW with confirmation the state government will make it illegal to push dodgy contracts on youngsters.

The NSW Government announced it would write the laws, pushed by unions, on the same day it was revealed Amber Oswald had been stood down without notice.

Amber won a case against Pulp Juice after the company attempted to use WorkChoices to scrap penalty rates and shift allowances, in a bid to cut her take home pay by more than 40 per cent.

Amber's example gave impetus to a union push for special laws preventing companies forcing workers aged under 18 onto Australian Workplace Agreements. That resolution was passed by the NSW ALP State Conference in May, becoming official policy.

While the company says the store is closed for 're-branding' it is also waiting for a case of under-paying workers that could lead it to being fined $400,000.

Within hours of the news of Amber's sacking breaking, NSW Premier Morris Iemma had called a press conference announcing the legislation, that would protect 150,000 young workers in NSW.,

Under the new laws, regardless of whether a young person is employed under a state or federal award:

* Wages and conditions will have to be at least at the level provided by NSW awards and legislation; and

* Young workers will not have to bargain individually to maintain their existing penalties, allowances, training pay and training leave.

They will also have access to the services provided by the NSW Office of Industrial Relations where they will have access to information about their employment rights and assistance to enforce their entitlements.

"Work Choices has dramatically altered the workplace for many people,": Iemma says.

"It allows the removal of protections and conditions that young workers were previously guaranteed - like meal allowances, training leave and penalty and overtime rates.

"Work Choices gives unscrupulous employers the right to force pay down and strip conditions from young workers, and compels good employers to follow suit if they want to remain competitive.

"This new legislation will prevent this from happening."

Iemma says that Work Choices makes it clear that laws regarding child employment are the responsibility of State and Territory governments.


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