||Issue No. 323||08 September 2006|
Interview: Australia’s Most Wanted
Industrial: The Fox and the Contractor
Unions: Industrial Wasteland
International: Two Bob's Worth
Economics: National Interest
Environment: The Real Dinosaur
History: Only In Spain?
Review: Clerk Off
Catch a Tube
Cleaners Mop Up a Big One
Global giant ISS has signed up to the LHMU's 'Clean Start' principles, meaning it won't allow its contractors use WorkChoices to drive down wages and conditions.
Contract cleaning is seen as one of the industries most vulnerable to a WorkChoices assault and the LHMU's strategy of targeting property managers is part of a global strategy being driven by the US-based SEIU.
" This is a wonderful step forward," LHMU national secretary Jeff Lawrence says.
"ISS is the market leader in Australia and is showing the way by honouring the Clean Start: Fair Deal for Cleaners principles for high cleaning standards, collective bargaining and decent work for cleaners in Australia."
Among the beneficiaries of the deal are cleaners from 34 nations working in the 41 storey Renzo Piano building in the Sydney CBD.
But Danny Nemer, born in Lebanon, and his 33 other colleagues from Nepal, Mongolia, Bangladesh, Belgium, Thailand, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Brazil and many other countries, are just happy that this agreement defends their $16 an hour wage from further erosion and gives them real opportunities to campaign for better and safer jobs.
" We think we should have the same rights to a fair go and the good life as many of the people who work on the floors above us," Danny explains as he talks about the successes of the Clean Start: Fair Deal for Cleaners campaign.
Danny has just got back from Lebanon having escaped the Hizbollah-Israel war with his family in a dangerous overland trip to Damascus.
Job security delivers new opportunity for young immigrant family
" That was really scary. That was insecurity," Danny Nemer explains to his workmates.
" But I tell you I was extremely happy to come back to work and find out that all our campaigning has resulted in a win which delivers job security for me and my young family."
The Clean Start: Fair Deal for Cleaners campaign was launched last April.
For more details go to http://www.lhmu.org.au/lhmu/campaigns/Clean_Start/
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