Workers Online
Workers Online
Workers Online
  Issue No 64 Official Organ of LaborNet 28 July 2000  




.  LaborNET

.  Ask Neale

.  Tool of the Week

Trades Hall

Neale Towart's Labour Review

The latest from the mixed up world of industrial relations from the Man with the Answers.


b>The Spreading Net: Age and Gender in the Process of Casualisation in Australia

Iain Campbell

The number of employees classified as casual in their main job has tripled between 1982 and 1999 and 26.4% of the workforce are now casual employees. Campbell gives a cross-national perspective on casualisation, distinguishes between real casual and long-term casual employees. He looks at the arguments presented by some who try to justify the increase in casualisation by saying it is the preference of certain groups of employees. These groups include social security recipients, women with small children or who are seeking to re-enter the labour force, and students.

Campbell finds that whilst these groups do have a certain preference for casual employment, they do not account for over 50% of the growth in the casual labour market, and they don't explain the large and increasing numbers of "casuals' who work long hours on a regular basis. Employer preference for workers with fewer rights would seem to be the key.

(Journal of Australian Political Economy; no. 45, June 2000)

Casual SA Clerks Win the Right to be Permanent

The South Australian Industrial Relations Commission (SAIRC) has ruled that casual clerks employed under the Clerks (SA) Award can choose to become permanent after a year of ongoing and regular employment. The Commission also granted the ASU application to extend the maximum weekly hours allowed for part-timers under the award to 37.5 from 30 hours.

Clerks (SA) Award [2000] SAIRComm 41. July 20, 2000

Manufacturing Industry in the Australian Economy: its role and significance

Phil Toner

A powerful argument for the importance of manufacturing industry to income levels for all, and the significance of investment and productivity growth in manufacturing for all other sectors of the economy. Employment growth has been in leisure, tourism and other service sector industries. Manufacturing's share of GDP had declined. The result has been a slump in terms of trade and real income per capita.

Exponents of the knowledge economy should not the strong connections between a large successful manufacturing sector and innovation, research and development expenditure, high living standards, terms of trade and service industries. Promoting the new economy, the post-industrial economy or whatever you wish to call it, and implicitly or explicitly writing off the manufacturing sector, is not a strategy for improvements in living standards in Australia or elsewhere.

(Journal of Australian Political Economy; no. 45, June 2000)

The High Road and the Low Road to International Trade: Emerging Exporters revisited.

George Argyrous

The experience of the firms recognised as "emerging Exporters" in the McKinsey & Co report of that name in 1992 is analysed to show that the 'high road' to industrial development is open to Australia, as long as it is recognised that interventionist industry policy decisions are made. The low road is that of offering cheap labour and access to resources to companies. The high road is a path based on productivity growth, technological sophistication and product innovation. It seeks to build prosperity through co-operation and high wages. The low road relies on conflict and insecurity, control and harsh worker punishments, and often features declining real wages. Both roads may work, as lower unit costs are seen as the key to production advantages. Australia should realise that there is a choice, and the low road is not some natural outcome of economics.

(Journal of Australian Political Economy; no. 45, June 2000)

Victorian Industrial Relations Taskforce

Terry Lane talks to Ron McCallum about the taskforce he is heading and the sorts of problems Victorian workers have faced since the Kennett removed many of their statutory protections in 1992. He also covers the general transition of the Australian industrial relations system since the early 1980s which has seen the removal or downgrading of many rights for workers, to the extent where they are the least protected workers in the OECD.

Women's Wages and Labour Market Deregulation

Kathryn Heiler questioned the the Employment Advocate's views on women's wages at the Women, Management and IR conference in Sydney. Hamberger claimed wages had increased under deregulation, but Heiler said the data was not good enough to show what was really happening because of lack of standardisation and inadequate categorisation of statistics.

The statistics that enable comparison between AWAs, non-union enterprise agreements and union collective agreements show that in every category AWAs, followed by non-union agreements were more likely to have:

� more than 38 hours a week as standard

� single rate overtime

� time off in lieu at ordinary time

� averaged hours (with averaging over unreasonable time periods)

� ordinary hours seven days per week

� more than 12 hours ordinary time per week

AWAs often had no provision for wage rises, and more likely to have clusters of low wage agreements. Women were often concentrated in areas were low wage agreements operated and in these agreements conditions were often traded away for a minimum of gain.

Forget Evidence: the demise of research involvement by NOHSC since 1996

Michael Quinlan

Since 1996 there has been a substantial and sustained decline in research actively undertaken directly or indirectly (through grant funding) by the National occupational health and Safety Commission (NOHSC). This decline has reached to the point that the NOHSC arguably has no capacity left to undertake meaningful research. Quinlan traces the decline and tries to identify some of the implications for OHS research generally that flow from this. A strategy to assert the NOHSC research leadership role is presented.

(Journal of Occupational Health and Safety Australia and New Zealand; vol. 16, no. 3, June 2000)

Workplace Safety - a union organiser's view

Michael O'Reilly

Unions have been around for a long time and their presence on worksites are a distinct advantage when it comes to workers getting home in one piece. They are the key to preventing injuries at work and improving OHS performance.

(Australian OHS (CCH); June/July 2000)

Facing Up to Footwear

Kevin Jones

Safety footwear seems at the bottom of the list of safety concerns, but should be a higher priority.

(Australian OHS (CCH); June/July 2000)


*   View entire issue - print all of the articles!

*   Issue 64 contents

In this issue
*  Interview: Greg Sword Unsheathed
The NUW national secretary is set to be endorsed as ALP Federal president next week. He talks about the relationship between the two wings of the labour movement.
*  Unions: Phone Rage, Headaches and Stress
A comprehensive survey of the call centre industry conducted by the ASU has revealed an industry workplace culture dominated by excessive monitoring and stress.
*  Economics: And the Winner Is .... Sydney?
Austrade chief economist Tim Harcourt looks at the export impact of the Sydney Olympics and asks if we'll win gold.
*  International: Western Sahara: Referendum Or War?
A June UN referendum in Western Sahara could have provided the people of Western Sahara a chance to exercise their right to self-determination and independence. It didn't.
*  History: The Union's Roots in Song
We look at some of the songs that kept working people going through their darkest hours.
*  Media: Unchaining the ABC
The ALP needs to rethink our public institutions to determine how they might better deliver the ends for which they were originally established.
*  Environment: Motorways Fail the Pollie Test
Our daily grind of congested roads, polluted air, and frustrated motorists is putting all and sundry to the test, and not least Liberal and Labor politicians.
*  Satire: Murdoch Launches Bid for Under-9s Netball Team
Sydney's lucrative junior league netball broadcasting market has been shaken by a bid by one of the world's most predatory entrepreneurs, Rupert Murdoch, to secure ownership of the most successful team in the league.
*  Review: Espionage a Trois
The Whitlams' brass section his teamed with some of the hippest cats in Sydney to make the sort of music you'll want to shoot baddies to.

»  McMeanies Skimp on Olympics Pay
»  Lawyers Pose as Students to Nail Workers
»  Fiji Union Protests on Wednesday
»  Casino Plumps for Penalty Rates
»  AWU�s Push For The Bush
»  Inquiry Lifts Lid on "SweetShops on Wheels"
»  Fair Traders Call for World Where People Matter
»  Accor Makes 'Cheeky' Olympics Offer
»  Sacking Threat Was �Group Therapy�
»  Doing It For The Love Of It
»  Deadline to Vote in ARM Poll Approaches
»  Grief Support for Workplace Tragedies
»  Workers Invited to Mark Federation

»  The Soapbox
»  Sport
»  Trades Hall
»  Tool Shed

Letters to the editor
»  Viva Eavesdropping Jonesy
»  Globalisation and Maintaining Our Lifestyle
»  Crappiest Music Feedback

What you can do

Notice Board
- Check out the latest events

Latest Issue

View entire latest issue
- print all of the articles!

Previous Issues

Subject index

Search all issues

Enter keyword(s):

Workers Online - 2nd place Labourstart website of the year


Wobbly Radio

[ Home ][ Notice Board ][ Search ][ Previous Issues ][ Latest Issue ]

© 1999-2000 Labor Council of NSW

LaborNET is a resource for the labour movement provided by the Labor Council of NSW

Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005

[ Privacy Statement | Disclaimer | Credits ]

LaborNET is proudly created, designed and programmed by Social Change Online for the Labor Council of NSW


 Labor Council of NSW

[Workers Online]

[Social Change Online]