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Issue No. 356 21 December 2006  
E D I T O R I A L

The End
In vintage Workers Online fashion we have detected a minor, but telling, factual error in last week’s missive/suicide note. It’s not a seven year itch – this is, in fact, the end of an eight year project.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: The Terminator
Unions NSW secretary John Robertson looks back on the highs and lows of a year when the battle lines were drawn.

Industrial: Vive La Resistance
Jim Marr glances back through a year of news and discovers plenty of reason for optimism…

Unions: Breaking News
The web offered new ways of covering unions issues. Here’s ten ways Workers Online tried to do things differently.

History: Seven Deadly Sins
Looking back on our annual year-ender editorials gives a nice overview of the journey we have taken.

Economics: Back to the Future
Political economist Frank Stilwell looks back at a year that saw the passing of the drivers of two strains of economic thought.

Politics: Organising and Organisations
Organising for unionists can mean overcoming the “union”. The “rolling of the right” by the BLF rank and file shows the power of workers united to defeat the power of bosses and certain union bosses.

International: Web Retrospective
Unions and the web – What's changed in the last seven years? The short answer is – everything and nothing, wrties Eric Lee

Review: Shock Therapy
Unreconstructed Kazakhi journalist Borat is unleashed on the ‘US and A’ offending everyone – except the bigots.

N E W S

 High Flyers Go For Gold

 Hospital Staff Prescribe Radical Surgery

 Holland Goes Dutch on Safety

 New Thinking to Transport Sydney

 Check Mate - Track Your Personal Info

 WorkChoices on a Trolley

 See No Evil, OEA

 Feltex Carpets PM's Fibs

 Workers Blood on the Walls

 Lift For Unfair Dismissal Campaign

 No Discrimination on Choice

 Vanstone Opens New Meat Market

 Activists' Notebook

C O L U M N S

The Future
So Where to Now?
Amanda Tattersall outlines her plans for Working NSW and the challenge of connecting research, communications and campaigning.

Obituary
Gone But Not Forgotten
Augusto Pinochet Ugarte (1915-2006). His memory is still being honoured, writes Jim Marr

Parliament
The Westie Wing
Our favourite politician bids adieu and hangs up his chestnuts.

L E T T E R S
 Hit For Six
 Kind Words
 Sorely Missed
 All the Best
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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News

Lift For Unfair Dismissal Campaign


Crane driver Barry Hemsworth is settling in for more heavy lifting in his crusade for unfair dismissal rights.

Supporters marked the 100th day of his one-man vigil outside Botany Cranes with a rally on December 14 at which Unions NSW launched a petition for the restoration of unfair dismissal rights.

Unions NSW secretary, John Robertson, opened the campaign with praise for Hemsworth's courage and commitment.

The long-standing union delegate was sacked, after 40 years service, when he objected to Botany Cranes moves to shift OH&S obligations onto individual drivers.

Because the company employed less than 100 people, Hemsworth had no access to unfair dismissal rights.

He and the CFMEU have turned down offers to go away, insisting on full reinstatement.

He says he has been buoyed by public support and has no intention of moving.

"Unfair dismissal rights are basic," he says. "Without them, the whole situation is stacked in favour of employers who want to drive unions out of business.

"They've been given a free hand to take away the livelihood of anyone who stands up for their workmates.

"It's wasn't until I was sitting here that I realised how important that was, and I've had plenty of time to think."

He backed the Unions NSW petition and urged people to sign.

"We know this government isn't interested but it is just as important to keep the pressure on the Labor Party," Hemsworth said.

Hemsworth is taking Christmas off with family and friends and will return to active duties on January 8. Building workers have bought the family a Christmas hamper.

Supporters can visit his picket at 3-5 Excell St, Banksmeadow, or pass their views direct to Botany Cranes at:

Ph 9666 6366; email botanycranes[email protected]; or by fax on 9666 3601.


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