Thursday, April 26, 2007

Employers' Pandora's Box.

It may seem a mystery to many in Australia why Victoria is polling so heavily for Labor at this early stage in the electoral cycle. No surprise to me. Jeff Kennett was the first to introduce draconian workplace laws, on a very large scale; not only did they strand the so called "unskilled", to fight for a few, very poorly paid casual hours , at the 'extra salt mine with that?', it also forced them to plead for a 'top up' from Centrelink, as well. With all that that entails. Victorians really hate Workchoices because it is the natural continuation of this system gone federal. Some watched as old friends, neighbours and relatives slipped down the economic gurgler. It is starting to get much closer to the middle class home. The 100k, a year, position might be cut back by 25% this year and maybe the same again in another year, given the recent decision of The Australian Industrial Relations Commission.

Andrew Cruickshank, 42, was made redundant by the Priceline retail chain in November along with 31 other employees. His salary package totalled $101,000, made up of $75,000 salary, superannuation payments and a car. The job was subsequently readvertised, offering a salary package of up to $75,000. AIRC ruled that the grounds for sacking workers under Work Choices using "operational reasons" were much broader than the grounds that existed under the previous federal industrial legislation."

It just opens a Pandora's box," said Gary Pinchen industrial advocate for Cruickshank "Provided employers have got some economic need - and what firm hasn't? - to reduce costs or increase profits in a changing economic environment they can now terminate people and replace them for a marginal economic saving. "

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