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Uniting Food, Farm and Hotel Workers World-Wide

International Support for Australian Campaign Against Anti-Union Laws

Posted to the IUF website 01-Dec-2006

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Some 280,000 workers and supporters of trade union rights took part in demonstrations across Australia on November 30 in a continuation of the national union campaign against the Howard government's viciously anti-union industrial relations laws. The high turnout took place despite what the national center ACTU termed "intimidation from the Federal Government and strong pressure to stay at work from many employers."

Legislation introduced by the Howard government - with more to come if they aren't stopped - strips unfair dismissal protection from millions of employees, facilitates the imposition of individual employment contracts over collective agreements, eases the way for employers to cut overtime, holiday and redundancy pay while reducing minimum wages and criminalizes many routine union activities.

Support actions were held in solidarity with Australian labour in cities around the world, including Geneva where the IUF and other international union organizations rallied outside the Australian mission, whose representatives refused to meet with the international union delegation. A letter to Prime Minister Howard from the assembled organizations was delivered under the watchful eyes of the police.