|Issue No 99||15 June 2001|
Stop CSR Militants Wrecking Economy
CSR must immediately end its lock-out of 1,000 workers at its north Queensland sugar mills to prevent damaging the regional economy.
"The workers are ready and waiting to get this season's crush underway, but CSR's refusal to let them work at this crucial time is threatening the local communities," ACTU President Sharan Burrow says.
The lock-out at seven CSR sugar mills is now in its third day, risking income for sugar farmers and local businesses in the Herbert, Burdekin, Plane Creek and Sarina districts.
"CSR is the latest company to use John Howard's extremist legislation to provoke a damaging conflict, regardless of the economic cost," Burrow says.
"The farmers, local businesses and workers are all calling on CSR to get back to the negotiating table. But CSR doesn't care because it's trying to sell out of the sugar business."
Unions lifted overtime bans last week in a bid to finalise a new enterprise bargaining agreement, but CSR refused to negotiate in good faith before locking out members of the Australian Workers Union, the Electrical Trades Union and the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union.
The Canegrowers association yesterday called on CSR to resume negotiations with the three unions.
Burrow says the problems at CSR were a direct result of company managers implementing militant tactics legalised by the Howard government in the Workplace Relations Act.
After the Act came into force in 1997, CSR attempted to use its provisions to cut sugar workers' pay by 21 per cent.
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005