|Issue No 51||28 April 2000|
Telstra Tangle Over 'Honest Rob'
By Dermott Browne
In a series of extraordinary admissions designed to convince the Federal Court that Telstra does not discriminate against unionised staff, Telstra accidently fessed up to the fact that AWA staff are actually worse off than staff employed under awards.
Telstra told the Court. "AWA employees have neither the redundancy rights nor the protections of Award staff,"
The admission was made during the case brought by CPSU and the Telstra unions. The unions are taking action against Telstra for the e-mail sent by 'honest' Rob Cartwright to his managers directing them to discriminate against award staff when handing out termination notices.
In a curious defence of their man, Telstra told the court that Honest Rob was not a discriminator and that he "may be a knave, but he is not a fool ".
Assistant Secretary of the CPSU Communications Section Stephen Jones takes the view that Honest Rob may be both.
'This is not the first time that Honest Rob has been caught being overly frank in his e-mail messages. Two years ago he got the company in all sorts of strife by revealing the details of a confidential discussion he had with a senior member of the Industrial Relations Commission. With this sort of example coming from the most senior level in Telstra it is no surprise that other Managers are having some difficulty in working out just when honesty is the best policy.'
Perhaps the Court will give some guidance in the next week when it finally decides whether Honest Rob is a Fool or a Knave.
Interview: Wrestling With Reith
CPSU national secretary Wendy Caird has faced the full force of Peter Reith's attack on the federal public sector. The good news is she's still fighting.
Unions: The Organiser
As the nature of working life changes fundamentally, union organisers like Sally are taking up the challenge and changing too.
Safety: Remembering the Fallen
NSW Industrial Relations Minister Jeff Shaw's keynote address to mark the International Day of Mourning for Deaths in the Workplace.
History: May Day Connections
May Day as a modern working class celebration and commemoration began from the 1886 events in Chicago where workers were demonstrating for an eight hour day. But the day already had special significance for working people before then.
Women: Swelling the Ranks
Jenny Wright wears the honour of being the nation's first pregnant wharfie modestly. But it's not all clear sailing for this trailblazer.
International: Dawn Raid to Arrest Korean Union Leaders
Riot police have broken into the office of the Daewoo Motors Workers Union in Pupyung, near Seoul, and taken union leaders into custody for the "crime" of leading a militant struggle to save the jobs of Korean auto workers.
Satire: Angry Star City Staff Strike it Unlucky
Gamblers panicked when they discovered they were locked out of the Casino when 1800 workers walked out.
Review: The World of Wobbly Window Cleaners
A new book 'Reshaping the Labour Market' shines the spotlight on the impact of labour market deregulation.
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005