Amazon warehouse: working in a modern day sweatshop

Ryan Stanton It has been 10 months since the portentous opening of Amazon’s first Australian “fulfilment centre” in Dandenong, south-east of Melbourne. A second warehouse, twice the size, opened in August in the suburbs of Sydney. Wide selections of goods and fast delivery times, however, are not the o...CONTINUE READING

Workers strike on billion dollar resort development

Foad Asabani Around 800 construction workers on a $1.4 billion high rise resort development in Surfers Paradise voted to down tools on 3 October. The strike is about job security on the Jewel Resort project after 150 workers were told that they were no longer needed. A dispute between the developer, Yu...CONTINUE READING

Rail workers step in to save station cleaners’ jobs

RTBU member Two sacked cleaners at Melbourne’s iconic Flinders Street Station have won their jobs back after joining with other rail workers to fight their boss. Ada and Lilly [not their real names] were sacked by cleaning contractor ISS, after they had refused to shift from permanent to casual positi...CONTINUE READING

Lockout at Airtrain 

Owen Cosgriff Airtrain’s managers have locked out their Brisbane workforce in retaliation against the workers taking protected industrial action as part of their enterprise agreement negotiations. The 30 mostly part time workers at Airtrain refused to collect fares (an exorbitant $20 each way between th...CONTINUE READING

Queensland government targeted in busy day of union protest

Carl Jackson “Queensland government: blood on your hands!” It’s a Monday morning, and the cries of up to 1,000 angry Brisbane construction workers echo under the facade of 1 William Street, the extravagant $650 million government office skyscraper commissioned in the dying days of the Newman Liberal Na...CONTINUE READING

Vicious anti-union law on hold – for now

Jerome Small It was predictable that a renewed attack on our unions would be high on the agenda for incoming prime minister Scott Morrison. For a party that can’t agree on how to supply electricity to the country – or on their own leadership – an attack on workers’ organisations can be an important uni...CONTINUE READING

Striking plasterers win back pay and higher wages

Claudia Raitt More than 100 striking plasterers on the Royal Hobart Hospital construction project have won back-payment of their wages and coverage by a union-struck enterprise agreement. In yet another chapter exposing the hyper-exploitation of migrant workers that is endemic to key parts of the Austra...CONTINUE READING

Early educators walk off for equal pay 

Jamie Whitford Early Childhood Educators Day, 5 September, is devoted to giving thanks to workers who educate children under the age of five. The government has thanked them in a peculiar way. The sector is expected to lose half a billion dollars in funding, and childcare workers’ wages have stagnated at...CONTINUE READING

Worker killed on Melbourne construction site

Jerome Small On the afternoon of Thursday 6 September, a construction site crane in the Melbourne suburb of Box Hill suffered a catastrophic mechanical failure. A giant steel kibble full of concrete plummeted down without warning on three workers. One is dead. Another is in hospital, while the third re...CONTINUE READING