||Issue No. 330||27 October 2006|
Fair Weather Friends
Interview: Cowboys and Indians
Industrial: Seven Deadly Sins
Unions: The IT Factor
Politics: Bargain Basement
Environment: An Inconvenient Hoax
Corporate: Two Sides
International: Unfair Dismissals
History: A Stitch in Time
Review: The Wind that Shakes the Barley
US Workers Bush Whacked
The AFL-CIO alleges a new definition of supervisor, brought down by the Bush-stacked National Labour Relations Board, will effectively destroy collective bargaining rights and deny millions of Americans union protections.
The Board, in controversial Kentucky River decisions, has ruled employers can fire employees, reclassified as supervisors, for union activities.
The AFL-CIO says the ruling violates international labour law that guarantees freedom of association, including the right to union organising and bargaining to "all workers without distinction".
Its complaint was laid on the same day the President used a "recess appointment" to put a mine boss, whose pits had worker injury rates twice the national average, in charge of the country's Mine Safety and Health Administration.
The United Mineworkers of America has protested against the appointment of Richard Stickler.
Bush used the recess appointment to slip Stickler into the post, while the Senate was not in session, after the body had twice blocked the appointment.
Forty American coalminers have died at work so far this year.
Last September, Bush outraged unions by nominating Republican activist and aggressive anti-unionist, Edwin Foulke, as Assistant Secretary of Labour for Occupational Health and Safety.
Bush lifted Foulke straight out of the anti-union law firm, Jackson Lewis, which skites of its expertise in "Labor Relations, Preventative Strategies'
Jackson Lewis sets up armed guards at factory gates to prevent union access and advises companies to impose forced overtime whenever union meetings are scheduled.
Foulke's company charges corporates $US1600 a head to attend seminars entitled "How to Stay Union Free in today's Era of Corporate Campaigns" and its deluxe version "Best Employer Practices to Stay Union Free in the Millenium".
According to US reports, Tonight Show host, Jay Leno, was so appalled by Jackson Lewis' union-busting that he refused to appear at the Society of Human Resource Management's annual convention until the law firm was ditched from the bill.
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