Bushfires: Community-union solidarity for climate action

Published on: Wed, 11/12/2019 - 10:44

Janet Burstall

The bushfire emergency is caused by climate change. Climate change is already bringing disaster. In NSW as of early December 2019 over 2.5 million hectares have been burned, over 700 homes destroyed, 3 people have died in the fires, and thousands of native creatures have been incinerated.

Beyond doubt of reasonable people, we do need urgent action to reduce greenhouse emissions.

In relation to the bushfires we also need to protect ourselves from the dangers caused by the fires; to repair the destruction to land, health and wildlife that they have caused; to provide more resources for

Bob Carnegie made honorary member of ETU

Published on: Mon, 09/12/2019 - 09:38

Bob Carnegie

On Friday 6 December 2019, I was awarded honorary life membership of the Queensland and Northern Territory Electrical Trades Union (ETU) for a working life which has at several critical moments intersected with supporting the ETU, its members, and their families.

It is the first time in the branch’s 104 year history it has awarded honorary membership to anyone other than an ETU member.

In 1985 I was arrested nine times for supporting the ETU after 1007 members working in the state owned electrical distribution network were sacked by a reactionary state government and replaced by scabs.

I spent

Changing the Rules under the Coalition government

Published on: Thu, 19/09/2019 - 01:34

Editorial WL72

A confidential ACTU review of the Change the Rules campaign was obtained by The Australian newspaper. The ACTU should release the report so that trade unionists, especially the activists who put so much effort into the campaign, can have a say in how unions can campaign for union rights, pay and conditions.
Change the Rules like previous Australian Union campaigns, Rights@Work and to a lesser extent Build a Better Future, organised thousands of trade union activists into local campaigning groups, leafleting, door-knocking in the suburbs to talk about union issues, with an immediate aim of

John Setka and making unions fit for women

Published on: Thu, 19/09/2019 - 01:25


John Setka’s position as Secretary of the Construction Division of the Victorian CFMMEU should be put up for re-election, so that members can have a say and settle the issue of his fitness for office in light of his abuse of women.
The CFMMEU Executive should call a proper member vote for his position. Setka should resign because of his sexual harassment and abuse.
We utterly oppose government interference in the right of union members to choose their leaders, or to judge John Setka. Neither should socialists, nor the labour movement be pressured into defending sexist abuse, because the

For climate action against capitalism - Change the politics to socialism

Published on: Thu, 19/09/2019 - 01:10

Editorial WL72

Capitalism is the major obstacle to effective climate action. The students leading the global climate strike are an inspiration for the depth of their commitment and understanding of both the science and the politics of climate change, and they will shake up the world.

Workers’ Liberty proposes a broad strategic way for the climate action and labour movements to cross the gulf from capitalist waste of life, labour and nature to democratically planned, public ownership of production for need and maximum freedom, i.e. socialism.

Change the politics to socialism
The climate strike is

Union leaders fail to challenge the rules by striking for the climate

Published on: Thu, 19/09/2019 - 00:13

Janet Burstall

Australian unions have not organised strike action for 20 September. The Australian Council of Trade Unions and its leaders, Sally McManus and Michele O’Neil have been deafeningly silent on climate action and the 20 September climate strike, up to at least the week before.
Many uniona and peak bodies have voted to endorse the climate strike but have not authorised strike action by their members. These include the Australian Services Union, Electrical Trades Union Queensland, NSW Nurses and Midwives Association, NSW Public Service Association, NSW Teachers Federation, National Union of Workers

The right to choose: the struggle continues

Published on: Thu, 19/09/2019 - 00:03

Kate Buckell

In August the NSW lower house passed legislation to remove abortion from the criminal code, making it the last State to do so in Australia. This is a victory for women’s reproductive rights and it is especially cheering given it comes at a time when we are facing renewed and pernicious attacks elsewhere, most notably the US. In late September the bill goes before the upper house. If it passes it will become law.
The amendments pushed by the upper house, following those in the lower house, are nothing more than attempts to derail the legislation, whatever the movers of these amendments claim.

Extinction Rebellion Lismore and Blockchain video review

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 23:27

Boyd Kellner

Around 300 people attended a meeting in Lismore organised by Extinction Rebellion in May this year. This by Lismore standards was a large meeting, seeing a cross section of people, professionals, trades people, retirees, alternate lifestylers.
This was indicative of the interest and concern by those attending.
Like many, disillusionment and cynicism of the mainstream institutions of politics and capitalism has brought out people looking at new ways to make positive change to combating climate change. Extinction Rebellion is the latest development on the NSW North Coast, reflecting the long

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