|Issue No 76||03 November 2000|
Retailers Renege On Fairwear Code
Now that Fairwear has put in place the tools for monitoring the Code of Practice - a chance for real improvements in wages for outworkers - the big retailers have decided to back out of the accreditation systems.
The Australian Retailers Association (ARA), dominated by 4 big retail groups - Coles Myer, Woolworths, Sussan and David Jones - with control over 70% of the clothing retail industry, has written to the Fairwear Code Committee saying they will have nothing to do with the accreditation or labelling systems, or the Product Sewing Manual.
Outworkers are to respond with a rally on Monday at 12.30pm in the Pitt Street Mall (outside Grace Bothers) to protest the ARA decision followed by a march to the head office of the ARA in Yorke Street.
Retailers' participation in these processes, says Fairwear, is essential for the Code to successfully stop the exploitation of outworkers.
Julia Murray from Fairwear says this action is a breach of the good faith these companies have been offered by Fair Wear.
'We have extensively promoted retailers on their word when they have signed the Homeworkers Code of Practice. Now, when they actually have to do something that will finally bring justice for outworkers they have broken their promise,' she says.
On a positive note, Julia says tools have been put in place for the monitoring of the code and an information campaign for outworkers will begin on 13th November with a multi-lingual phone in and promotion in the ethnic media.
An information campaign for consumers will commence in February with the launch of the "No SweatShop" label.
The monitoring consists of:
Interview: Withering On The Vine
Cooking shows and 'Bugs fucking to Mozart' may become the staple diet on our ABC as news and current affairs face a war of attrition. Quentin Dempster gives Workers Online an insider's view of our endangered national broadcaster .
US Election: Sugar Candy Politics
Like in everything else, Americans like their politics sugar coated. A Nation in denial, they are happier maintaining the fantasy that the world is a fine and dandy place says Michael Gadiel.
US Election: George W. Bushwhacked by Texas Truth Squad
The Texas Truth Squad are a group of Texan union members travelling the US on a crusade to expose the Republican presidential nominee as a corporate rogue who in his time as Governer proved himself as an enemy of the worker.
History: Federation and the Labour Movement
National celebrations will mark the Centenary of Federation next year. The labour movement's opposition to Federation at the referenda held around the Australian colonies in 1899 will attract less commemoration, although the republicans of 1999 might have benefited from reflection on the causes of working class discontent one hundred years earlier says Stuart Macintyre.
International: Unions Mac Their Day
McDonald's - the biggest employer of young people around the world - is increasingly becoming the target of union recognition campaigns, backed by human rights groups concerned about the fast food chains practices in countries such as Indonesia, China, Russia, Canada and Germany.
Satire: Wiranto’s charity album inspires genocidal maniacs everywhere
Indonesia’s favourite former strongman, General Wiranto, has recently decided to record an album of love songs. Entitled To You My Indonesia, Wiranto’s album has already sold 8,000 copies and is raising money for refugees.
Review: What About the Workers?
A big, gruff bloke in a blue singlet, on strike or just not working, and generally being difficult. That's the trade unionist for you. Barry Cohen's new book What About the Workers? shows this image may have a bit of truth about it, but he would be telling a few good yarns while he was standing about.
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005