Ever since the Howard Government established the Australian Building & Construction Commission, the Australian Greens have supported the union fight to have it abolished.
Putting their words into action, the Greens have introduced a Bill into Parliament to immediately abolish the ABCC and repeal the Building and Construction Industry Improvement Act.
There is no justification for discriminating against workers by denying them their democratic rights, including the right to silence and the right to collectively organise. The ABCC has powers few organisations in Australia have ever had. It is bullying and harassing ordinary workers and their families.
The Greens are worried about the impact of the ABCC on the safety of workers in a hazardous industry. The ABCC has created a culture of fear where workers feel threatened for speaking up over genuine safety concerns.
“The ABCC should be abolished and the building and construction industry regulated just like any other industry - in a fair and just manner that balances the needs of the economy with the health, safety and democratic rights of workers.” - Senator Rachel Siewert
The Greens' Charter of Work Rights
Only the Australian Greens are committed to completely overturning the Howard government's industrial relations disaster and creating a truly fair and equitable industrial relations system that protects the legitimate rights of workers and their families.
- Everyone has the right to be treated with dignity and have an equal opportunity in the workplace.
- Everyone has the right to a safe and healthy workplace.
- Everyone has the right to decent pay and to hours of work that let them live a full, happy and healthy life. This right should be protected through enforceable minimum legal standards and fair collective agreements.
- Everyone has the right to join a union, and it is essential that unions have a right to visit employees at work to make sure employers are complying with workplace and safety laws, or to discuss union membership.
- The rights to collectively bargain, to collectively withhold labour and to collectively organise in a workplace or industry are essential to achieving a sustainable and democratic future.
- Disputes about industrial action and workplace matters should be dealt with by an industrial relations commission, not by the courts.
- Individual contracts (like AWAs and ITEAs) undermine awards and collective agreements. Individual contracts should be abolished and workers should be able to move off individual contracts immediately.
- Employers should not be allowed to use ‘independent contracting' arrangements or other such devices to undermine the rights of workers.
- The Australian Building and Construction Commission and the building industry laws undermine democratic rights. The ABCC and the building industry laws must be abolished.
- Labor's Work Choices-Lite solution ‘Forward with Fairness' must be amended to reflect the above principles immediately.
Support the Australian Greens' "Restoring Workplace Rights Bill" to:
- Abolish the ABCC immediately
- Repeal the BCII Act
- Ensure building and construction workers are treated the same as any other workers
For more information about the Unions' campaign to abolish the ABCC, visit www.rightsonsite.org.au
You can download the attached flyer & poster, print it out and put it up at your workplace. Also please contact our office on 08 9228 3277 to get some bumper & hard hat stickers.