|Issue No 61||07 July 2000|
No Guarantees for Email Workers
Email management is refusing to guarantee the security of accrued entitlement as the Orange whitegoods manufacture faces an uncertain future.
The workers are gearing up for a corporate campaign calling on Email shareholders to ensure that they receive the guarantees that Email's managing director Ralph Waters has refused to give.
The plant, which employs 1,500 workers and accounts for 35 per cent of the central western NSW town's economy, is under threat as corporate giants circle the Australian company.
More than 4,000 workers converged on Orange today from as far afar as Wollongong and Sydney for a day of action organised by Orange Trades and Labour Council secretary Mick Maddern and delegates from the Australian Workers Unions and the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union.
They were joined by workers from the fields of finance, hospitality, communications, clerical workers, building workers, teachers and nurses; as well as colleagues from the AWU and AMWU who travelled on the convoy of buses.
They marched through the town before hearing from union leaders and rank and file delegates from the plant at a rally, sausage sizzle and concert with local legends 'Country Express'.
Taken for Fools
Delegates Ian Crombie and Robert George addressed the rally, accusing Email boss Ralph Waters of keeping them in the dark about their future.
The workers are seeking three guarantees about the future of the Email plant:
- maintenance of jobs
- maintenance of current wages and conditions
- guarantees that accrued entitlements will be protected.
But they say a series of meetings in Orange and Sydney had failed to elicit any firm commitments from the management. "As simple as it seems, they sent us away liken a bunch of fools," Crombie said.
Waters has been telling the media that workers have nothing to fear, but as a director of Electrolux - one of the corporates circling, the workers want more than just words.
Line in the Sand
NSW Labor Council secretary Michael Costa told the crowd the workers had travelled from Sydney in solidarity with the Orange workers.
He said the day represented a 'line in the sand' for rural and regional NSW - the message being further cuts to jobs and services would no longer be tolerated.
AMWU state secretary Paul Bastian linked the threats to the broader issue of 'fair trade', claiming that the Australian work would be imported to countries that did not meet Australian industrial and environmental standards.
AWU Ross Collison said the focus had to remain on Orange and the treatment of workers in regional NSW by a company in the midst of a hostile takeover.
Technology: Union Rep for Global Net Body
The godfather of unions and the Internet, Eric Lee, is seeking your support to give labour a voice on the net's governing body, ICANN.
Interview: Downloaded and Done Over
In the wake of the TV Networks' digital TV victory, Internet industry chief Peter Coroneus rues a missed opportunity for Australia.
Legal: The Global Millennium Project
The International Centre for Trade Union Rights (ICTUR) has developed a draft proposal for a comprehensive revision and modernisation of international labour standards for the new millenium.
Unions: Sandgropers Get Serious on Stress
The Australian Services Union in Western Australia in conjunction with the University of Western Australia, is surveying workers across the state's call centre industry.
Politics: New Work for a New Millennium
View in full the ALP's Draft Industrial Relations Policy to be taken to the National Conference at the end of the month.
Solidarity: Korean Hotel Workers Seek Global Help
Striking Korean hotel workers at the Swiss Grand Hotel and the Seoul Hilton are worried they could be the next targets of escalating riot police violence.
History: Vince's Parable of the Sundial
How a working man survived WWII and ASIO blacklists to save a sundial.
International: Room for Optimism from African Poll
The performance of pro-Deomcracy groups in the Zimbabwean elections has given supporters hope for better days.
Environment: Mexican Wave Goes Green
American politics has taken on a Green hue with the left leaning National Action Party and the Greens in Mexico picking up nearly 40% of the vote in the recent elections.
Satire: Aussies Celebrate Centenary by Leaving Country
Prime Minister John Howard has defended his government's decision not to involve Australia in the centenary federation celebrations.
Review: A Building Sings of Lives Lived in Music
Mysterious shadows flicker in the windows of the Parramatta Town Hall. Strains of trumpet and sarod float outside. It's all part of the urban Theatre Project's latest work, 'The Palais'.
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005