Abolishing the ABCC is Labor policy
The Labor Government has acted on its commitment at the 2007 and 2010 elections to introduce legislation to abolish the Australian Building and Construction Commission.
This year the ABCC has been forced to admit that it illegally interrogated 203 people up to November last year, misusing the draconian powers available to it.
The fact that the government will finally act to get rid of the last of John Howards anti worker laws is good news.
But it appears that under the bill Labor will introduce, coercive powers will be not be abolished, simply transferred to another agency.
These are the powers which mean workers can face prosecution and imprisonment for refusing to act as informants against their workmates and their union.
Workers like Ark Tribe, who stood up against bad safety on his site.
If you believe in the principle that all workers have equal rights, Rights on Site wants your support to end coercive powers.
The ABCC was a pet policy of the Howard Government, pushed by the anti-union zealots in the Liberal Party and their supporters amongst big property developers and construction companies.
Labor should not retain any part of this attack on workers and unions.
Already we have seen the Liberal Party, the Master Builders Association and the Australian Constructors Association, jump to the ABCC’s Defence, talking up a dishonest fear campaign in their attempt to defend the ABCC.
We can expect those who support these bad laws to use all the tricks in the book to keep them in place.
I urge you to write to your local Labor MHR or Senator to let them know how you feel about the prospect of coercive powers being retained, and the threat they pose to workers in the construction industry.
If you want to do this, take action now.
I would also urge you to let friends who are concerned about workers’ rights in this country to join the campaign by visiting the www.rightsonsite.org.au website.
It’s time for an end to unfair and discriminatory laws. It’s time for Labor to stand up for workers and for their rights on site.
Peter Tighe – National Secretary