IN EARLY June Thiess Services sacked four union members for pushing a union collective agreement with the company.
The CFMEU construction union is calling on the company to reinstate the sacked workers and to engage in enterprise bargaining negotiations in good faith.
CFMEU Acting Secretary Malcolm Tulloch said the company was trying to rush through its sub-standard agreement before new workplace laws came into effect on July 1.
The proposed non-union agreement takes away rostered days off and forces workers to use up annual leave when equipment fails—in exchange for a measly 1 per cent pay increase.
This is in spite of this building site being one of Australia’s most toxic and sacked workers being long-term workers for the company. After firing four union members demanding a union agreement, the company has pushed through a non-union agreement and hired replacements.
Sacked union delegate Nigel Gould said “they are evidently trying to take away our basic human right to be a part of a union and have a union. It is unfair dismissal. We are going to continue campaigning and momentum is growing”.
The CFMEU and the sacked workers will be protesting outside the Thiess site at 42 Walker Street, Rhodes in Sydney until their demands are met.
There are having protest actions every Thursday and a preliminary hearing in their legal campaign against the dismissal will occur on August 10.
The legacy of the Howard years evidently lives on in this unfair dismissal, alongside Rudd’s continuation of the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC), which attacks union organising on construction sites.
There should be immediate re-instatement of sacked workers, with rights to fair wages and entitlements through a union agreement.
By Feiyi Zhang

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