To strengthen workers’ collective bargaining rights, the Biden administration looks poised to recommend a host of modest reforms to existing programs and policies. But the working class will remain disempowered unless it organizes itself on a mass scale.
Source: Workers Need Organization, Not Technocratic Fixes
When ninety United Workers Union members went on strike on June 4 at General Mills in Rooty Hill, in Sydney’s outer-west, they knew they were up against a powerful international corporation. But they also began to sense their collective power as workers and union members. “We don’t care how long this lasts,” one of the striking workers told me. “We’re here for as long as it takes. Another day longer, another day stronger!” On June 25, the workers at General Mills celebrated a remarkable victory. The company had stubbornly refused to countenance their claims, offering them an average pay rise of just 1.5 percent, offset by cuts to their conditions and new clauses that could see them having to take on more weekend work. After three weeks on strike, the global food giant backed down, offering a wage rise of 9 percent over three years without any trade off in conditions. The workers also won a $1,500 bonus and protection for all labor hire casuals and contractors who participated in the strike.
Source: Workers in Australia Launched a Strike Against General Mills. They Just Won.
Will the same be said of Banking and the Finance Sector? Will anybody be Charged? Neoliberalism is intent on destroying any rights people have to associate and unionise. Their purpose and ideal is to govern over a total disassociated society of individuals without any voice or means of dissent.(ODT)
The national building regulator needed to be “publicly exposed” for wasting taxpayer money after it made an “outrageous” decision to take legal action against two construction union officials for having a cup of tea, the Federal Court has found.
Federal Court Justice Tony North said the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) had wasted money taking legal action against the Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union officials.
“I hold the clear view that this is a case where the ABCC should be publicly exposed as having wasted public money without a proper basis for doing so, in my view,” he said.
via Judge blasts building cop for wasting public money on ‘tea cup’ case
These results should end the simplistic tales in which education alone challenges the dominance of the 1 percent. If we want to change whom our economy works for, we must change who gets to exercise power. And this paper makes it clear: There is power in a union.
via There Is Power in a Union | The Nation
Over recent decades in Australia union membership has fallen from 40% of the workforce in 1990 to 15% in 2016 and so unions might seem less relevant in making a difference to what we earn. But our research finds that union members do earn higher wages per hour than non-union members.
via Why union members earn higher wages than their non-union colleagues
“We swear by the Southern Cross to stand truly by each other and fight to defend our rights and liberties.”
The parallels between the oath taken by rebellious miners in 1854 and the solidarity required for successful organising explain trade unionists’ enthusiasm for the Eureka rebellion. They also explain the Australian Building and Construction Commission’s hostility to it – or, at least, to the famous Southern Cross flag
via The crackdown on the Eureka flag is another bid to destroy our unions | Jeff Sparrow | Opinion | The Guardian
The secret wages deal comes after a 12-month Fairfax Media investigation revealed how big employers and the SDA struck deals that left more than 250,000 workers paid less than the award – the wages safety net.
via Secret Woolworths deal with Shoppies union cuts wages
If the players were operating individually, they’d be stuffed – and so are Australian workers in general, if they want higher wage growth
Source: The cricket pay dispute is a wonderful advertisement for joining a union | Greg Jericho | Business | The Guardian
New research from the IMF says unions reduces inequality, fosters and healthier economy and are essential for a well-functioning democracy.
Source: Unions decrease inequality, strengthen democracy and improve the economy
Several years ago, US blogger Conceptual Guerilla coined a three word slogan that explains right wing ideology very succinctly – “cheap-labour conservatives”. He agrees with Karl Marx that the fortunes of the corporate/capitalist elite depend on keeping the workers “over a barrel”. Marx saw the conflict between those that own the means of production and…
Source: Cheap-labour conservatives – » The Australian Independent Media Network
You know you’re a low-wage employer when you’re bragging about raising base pay levels to $15 an hour … for your managers. And not even all of them:
Wal-Mart told The Associated Press late Monday that department managers of complex and service-oriented jobs in areas like produce, electronics and auto care, will start at $13 per hour and top out at $24.70 per hour, beginning next month. Starting next February, they will be paid at least $15 per hour. Previously, the pay range was from $10.30 to $20.09. Meanwhile, those managers of less-complicated departments like clothing, and consumer products like paper towels and luggage, will earn from $10.90 to $20.71 per hour. Previously, they earned from $9.90 to $19.31.
Don’t get me wrong, raises are good and this is progress, but seeing a giant, profitable company give some, but not all, department managers a raise to a living wage is not exactly the embodiment of economic justice. And like other window-dressingish raises given by Walmart, McDonald’s, and the like in recent months, it owes a lot—much more than the companies would ever admit—to relentless worker organizing over the past three years.