Workers Issues in Australia & the Pacific

Toyota worker denounces union over shutdown of Australian car industry

By our reporter, 21 November 2015

“The only people who will win out from this closure are the company and the unions.”

BlueScope praises Australian unions for pushing through job destruction at Port Kembla

By Oscar Grenfell, 21 November 2015

The company will now try to use the threat to close the steel plant to extract more cuts to wages and conditions.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

21 November 2015

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Australian unemployment figures provoke disbelief and criticism

By Terry Cook, 20 November 2015

Despite mounting job losses, Australian Bureau of Statistics figures for October recorded an unexplained fall in the unemployment rate.

Australian unions force through steel job cuts and wage freeze

By Oscar Grenfell, 19 November 2015

A significant minority of workers rejected the company-union blackmail.

Australian maritime union betrays Hutchison workers

By Richard Phillips, 18 November 2015

Hutchison management thanked the union for giving the company “greatly enhanced flexibility.”

Australian unions seek to ram through job destruction at BlueScope Steel

By Oscar Grenfell and James Cogan, 17 November 2015

Opposition has steadily increased to the union’s efforts to blackmail workers into voting to slash their own conditions.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

14 November 2015

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Australia: Growing opposition to union-company deal at Port Kembla steelworks

By Oscar Grenfell, 13 November 2015

The unions are seeking to intimidate workers into accepting 500 job cuts, a wage-freeze and an overhaul of working conditions.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

7 November 2015

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Chevron to slash hundreds of jobs at Australian gas projects

By Terry Cook, 6 November 2015

The resources giant is eliminating up to 14,000 jobs globally, underscoring the sharp reversal in the mining sector.

Australian financial commentator hails union role in steel cuts at Port Kembla

By Oscar Grenfell, 5 November 2015

The so-called negotiations had the character of a union-company conspiracy against the BlueScope workers.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

31 October 2015

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Australian electricity unions go to industrial tribunal to assist job shedding

By Terry Cook, 27 October 2015

A directive by the Fair Work Commission ordering the reinstatement of 74 workers amounts to nothing more than a temporary stay of execution.

Major shareholder predicts closure of Australian steel plant

By Oscar Grenfell, 22 October 2015

The comments underscore that the attack on the Port Kembla workers is part of a global restructuring of the steel industry.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

17 October 2015

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Australian public sector union in closed-door talks with government

By Terry Cook, 17 October 2015

After closed-door talks, the CPSU is working with the new Turnbull government to break up resistance by public sector workers to its cost-cutting demands.

Amid moves to sell-out Hutchison workers, Maritime Union of Australia threatens WSWS

By James Cogan, 14 October 2015

The MUA’s main fear is that the alternative perspective provided by the WSWS has won an audience among waterfront workers.

Australian dock, engineering workers express solidarity with US autoworkers

By our correspondents, 13 October 2015

Workers involved in bitter industrial disputes on the Australian waterfront and at engineering company UGL have spoken out in support of American autoworkers.

Australia: Union keeps tram workers in dark over new agreement

By our correspondent, 13 October 2015

The RTBU has declared that workers will see the full enterprise bargaining agreement with Yarra Trams only after a vote is taken on it.

Australian Toyota workers support US auto workers’ struggle

By our correspondents, 12 October 2015

Autoworkers in Australia face the shutdown of the country's entire auto industry.

Oppose the destruction of the car industry in Australia! Launch a struggle in defence of jobs!

By the Socialist Equality Party (Australia), 10 October 2015

The closure of the car plants is not inevitable, but it can only be fought on the basis of a new political perspective and new forms of organisation.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

10 October 2015

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Unions push sweeping cuts to Australian steel workers’ jobs and conditions

By Oscar Grenfell, 9 October 2015

The deal hatched by the unions and BlueScope involves hundreds of sackings and a wage freeze.

Australian maritime union moves to sell out Hutchison dispute

By Mike Head, 7 October 2015

Under the MUA agreement, all Hutchison workers will be required to work for half pay, or less.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

3 October 2015

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Australia: Union imposes job cuts at UGL, defying workers’ votes

By Mike Head, 30 September 2015

Workers accuse the AMWU of paving the way for the next round of redundancies.

Australia: Union shuts down industrial action by public transport workers

By Frank Gaglioti, 29 September 2015

Workers are being deliberately kept in the dark over deals being struck by the unions and management behind closed doors.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

26 September 2015

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Australian public sector workers reject government pay offer

By Terry Cook, 25 September 2015

The CPSU has kept workers divided along departmental lines, while appealing to the Turnbull government for negotiations on its cost-cutting demands.

Unions push protectionism while pledging to impose steel job cuts at Wollongong rally

By Zac Hambides, 22 September 2015

At a “Save Our Steel” rally the unions sought to channel the anger over job losses into nationalist calls for governments to subsidise local steel producers.

Australian UGL workers condemn union’s role in retrenchments

By Mike Head, 21 September 2015

Workers at UGL’s Auburn railway workshops in Sydney last week responded warmly to a Socialist Equality Party leaflet.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

19 September 2015

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Australian tram drivers strike over jobs and conditions

By Margaret Rees, 14 September 2015

As tram workers hold limited stoppages, the Victorian Premier Labor threatens to do whatever is necessary “to protect the economic interests of the state.”

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

12 September 2015

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UGL workers face deepening job cuts in Australia and Asia

By the Socialist Equality Party, 11 September 2015

The layoffs by a major engineering company are part of a wider barrage of job destruction throughout Australia and internationally.

Australia: State Labor government attacks striking train staff

By Margaret Rees, 7 September 2015

For the second time in two weeks, the Victorian government tried to ban industrial action by low-paid rail workers.

Australian 7-Eleven workers under-paid and super-exploited

By Oscar Grenfell, 5 September 2015

Convenience store workers, often vulnerable international students, are forced to work for half-pay.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

5 September 2015

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South Australian government and private corporations axe thousands of jobs

By Terry Cook, 4 September 2015

Unemployment in the state is climbing as major companies and the Labor government restructure and slash costs.

BlueScope Steel workers speak with the WSWS

By our reporters, 3 September 2015

BlueScope Steel workers from the company’s Port Kembla plant, south of Sydney spoke with the World Socialist Web Site reporters at an early morning mass meeting in Wollongong yesterday . The Australian Workers Union (AWU) and other unions have responded to the management’s threat to shut the plant, Australia’s largest steel making plant, by promising to assist the company slash up to 500 jobs as part of $200 million cost-cutting restructure.

Australian steel unions enforce destruction of jobs and conditions

By Richard Phillips, 3 September 2015

The unions have pledged to defend BlueScope Steel’s profits and provide the company with $200 million in cost-cutting measures.

Australian mining giant replaces Blackwater workers with contractors

By Declan O’Malley, 2 September 2015

The mining union is pleading with the company to keep collaborating in cutting costs at the expense of jobs and conditions.

Union collaborates in attacks on New Zealand Steel workers

By Tom Peters, 29 August 2015

BlueScope Steel is threatening to shut down its Glenbrook steel plant in New Zealand and axe over 1,000 jobs.

Australia: Melbourne tram drivers strike over wages and conditions

By our correspondents, 29 August 2015

Despite denunciations by the Victorian state Labor government, metropolitan train drivers have voted for a similar stoppage next Friday.

Australia: Hutchison Ports dispute at the crossroads

By the Socialist Equality Party (Australia), 29 August 2015

Left in the hands of the MUA, the outcome is a foregone conclusion: the further destruction of the jobs and conditions of waterfront workers.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

29 August 2015

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Australia: BlueScope Steel demands mass job cuts under threat of plant closure

By Terry Cook, 26 August 2015

The Australian Workers Union has immediately signalled that it will help impose BlueScope Steel’s job-cutting measures.

New Zealand rail company prepares further job cuts

By our reporter, 22 August 2015

Successive Labour and National-led governments, assisted by the unions, have already devastated the railway system over the past three decades.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

22 August 2015

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Australian transport union calls off Melbourne train and tram strike

By Terry Cook, 20 August 2015

The state Labor government reacted with undisguised hostility to the prospect of the first public transport strike in Melbourne since 1997.

Australian union sells out Woolworths warehouse strikers

By our correspondents, 19 August 2015

After isolating the walkout and telling workers that they could face crippling fines, the NUW pushed through a return-to-work vote.

Sacked Hutchison workers barred entry after Australian union sells out strike

By Richard Phillips, 15 August 2015

The court ruling gave the union precisely what it wanted: to shut down the strike and demobilise workers, while it manoeuvres for a negotiated job-cutting deal.

Australia: Union officials force SEP supporters off Sydney dock picket

By Zac Hambides, 15 August 2015

The unions are trying to silence criticism because they cannot answer the truth—they are carrying out a betrayal of the Hutchison workers.

Melbourne transport workers vote for industrial action

By Terry Cook, 15 August 2015

After almost unanimous votes for industrial action, the union is seeking to cobble together a sellout deal with the state Labor government.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

15 August 2015

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Australian waterfront union betrays Hutchison strike

By Mike Head, 14 August 2015

While claiming a “victory,” as it did in 1998, the MUA is sending the Hutchison Ports workers back to work today, with many to lose their jobs.

Australian warehouse workers defy court order to end strike

By our correspondents, 13 August 2015

The Woolworths workers have become the second group of strikers currently defying return to work orders, following similar votes by Hutchison Port workers Brisbane and Sydney.

Hutchison Ports’ sackings in Australia and the global restructuring of the docks

By Mike Head, 12 August 2015

Hutchison is rolling out remotely-controlled automated terminals around the world, ruthlessly destroying jobs and conditions.

New Zealand Meat Workers Union calls off two-day strike

By John Braddock, 12 August 2015

The unions have been operating from the outset to isolate and wear down workers in the protracted 18-month dispute over AFFCO’s demands for further cuts to working conditions.

Hutchison workers continue strike as Australian union calls for “negotiated” job cuts

By Richard Phillips, 11 August 2015

The MUA has responded to an industrial commission return-to-work directive by denying it has any involvement in the waterfront walkout.

Sacked Hutchison workers speak out

By our reporters, 10 August 2015

World Socialist Web Site reporters spoke with sacked Hutchison Port Australia workers at Sydney’s Port Botany terminal over the past two days. Workers described Hutchison’s high-productivity regime and how the company lured workers from various stevedoring companies, as well as airline, manufacturing and logistics businesses, promising them long-term employment.

Hutchison Australia waterfront workers continue strike action

By Richard Phillips, 10 August 2015

No faith can be placed in the union, which has collaborated with waterfront companies for decades in restructuring that has destroyed thousands of jobs.

Australian business demands deeper cuts to wages and conditions

By Mike Head, 7 August 2015

The Productivity Commission report sets out a framework for cutting wages and conditions to the levels already imposed on workers in Europe and America.

Australian job cuts mount

By our reporter, 4 August 2015

Thousands more mining-related workers are expected to lose their jobs during the next 12 months, with the impact spreading across the country.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

25 July 2015

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

18 July 2015

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Hypocrisy all round as Australian Labor leader testifies at royal commission

By Mike Head, 10 July 2015

There is nervousness in ruling circles about the potential of the revelations to intensify the popular hostility toward the entire political establishment.

Australian state government to slash hundreds of electricity jobs

By Terry Cook, 10 July 2015

Networks NSW jobs are being eliminated to cut costs and make the sale of its businesses more attractive to potential buyers.

Labor leader pledges support for further privatisations

By Terry Cook, 10 July 2015

New South Wales Labor Opposition leader Luke Foley dedicated a substantial part of his state budget reply speech last month to assure the financial elite that Labor, in or out of office, remained the privatisation party par excellence.

Unemployed forced to “work for the dole” in Australia

By Zac Hambides, 6 July 2015

Thousands of unemployed workers are now being forced to carry out unpaid work in exchange for welfare payments.

Australia Post to axe another 1,900 jobs in preparation for privatisation

By Keith Morgan, 4 July 2015

The claim of mail business losses is a smokescreen to eliminate as many as 10,000 jobs over the next three years.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

4 July 2015

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Australian treasurer denies housing affordability crisis

By Terry Cook, 24 June 2015

Rampant speculation by banks and property developers, encouraged by government tax breaks, has produced an astronomical increase in housing prices.

Australian Labor leader defends “modern” union deals to boost corporate profits

By Mike Head, 23 June 2015

Bill Shorten spelt out the role of the trade unions as industrial police forces over their members.

Australian Labor leader under fire over “sweetheart” deals with employers

By Mike Head, 17 June 2015

The posturing of both the prime minister and opposition leader as defenders of low-paid workers reeks of hypocrisy.

Australian cleaners denied penalty rates by trade union for more than a decade

By our reporters, 17 June 2015

Cleanevent workers speak to the WSWS about their poor pay and conditions, and the role of the Australian Workers Union.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

13 June 2015

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Australian government vilifies human rights commissioner

By Mike Head, 8 June 2015

Commissioner Triggs warned of a “growing threat to democracy” produced by terrorism laws, refugee detention, mandatory sentencing and anti-association legislation.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

6 June 2015

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Australian union boosted membership lists by imposing low wages

By Mike Head, 5 June 2015

The Australian Workers Union agreement saved Cleanevent $6 million over three years, at the expense of low-paid casual cleaners.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

16 May 2015

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

2 May 2015

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

25 April 2015

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

18 April 2015

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

11 April 2015

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Mass strike by Vietnamese shoe workers

By Ben McGrath, 6 April 2015

As many as 90,000 workers conducted a week-long strike against a government attack on their social insurance benefits.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

4 April 2015

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

28 March 2015

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Australian trade unions spearhead slashing of wage penalty rates

By Mike Head, 26 March 2015

The agreement sends a wider signal: the unions and the Labor Party are ready to enforce an all-out assault on wages and working conditions.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

21 March 2015

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

14 March 2015

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

7 March 2015

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Australian union rallies seek to divert anger over attacks on wages and services

By our reporters, 5 March 2015

The ACTU staged a “National Day of Action” yesterday to try to head off the intense hostility among workers to the mounting assault on wages, working conditions and social services.

Australian workers denounce budget cuts and austerity drive

By our correspondents, 5 March 2015

Workers from a variety of industries spoke to WSWS correspondents after yesterday’s trade union rallies in Sydney and Melbourne, explaining what issues led them to join the protests and discussing the political questions raised by the speakers’ promotion of the perspective of returning another Labor government.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

28 February 2015

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Australian prime minister’s leadership continues to unravel

By Mike Head, 26 February 2015

Underlying the destabilisation is mounting business dissatisfaction with the Abbott government’s failure to impose deep cuts to social spending and workers’ wages and conditions.

Australia: Aurizon workers confront deep assault on conditions

By Terry Cook, 25 February 2015

Amid plummeting coal prices, the rail freight company is seeking to dismantle long-standing working conditions and protections for its Queensland workforce.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

21 February 2015

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

14 February 2015

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