BWI - Building and Wood Worker's International

12/04/2019 | News release | Distributed by Public on 12/03/2019 18:47

AUSTRALIA: BWI affiliates take action as Senate rejects anti-union law

BWI affiliates attending the Asia-Pacific Regional Conference in Perth last week held a protest against the anti-union 'Ensuring Integrity' Bill, demanding the Government drop the legislation that is intended to attack the Australian trade union movement. Days later, the Bill failed to pass the Senate, a huge victory for the trade union movement.

'Having our comrades from all across the Asia-Pacific region has been absolutely amazing for us, and to know that other countries are going through similar struggles against repressive labour laws is important for our members to understand,' said ETU National Secretary Allen Hicks. 'We thank you for your solidarity on this fight, and, know that we will be there to support when your day comes. One Struggle, One Fight, Workers of the World Unite!'

Many unions from across the globe had written to independent Senators, underscoring to them that this legislation was in violation of Australia's international obligations and contrary to the principles of democracy. Tens of thousands of Australian union members had done the same, calling Senators' offices and demanding them to vote against the Bill.

'Workers and unions from across the region have traditionally looked to Australia as a place where strong unions ensured workers' rights on the job were protected,' said BWI General Secretary Ambet Yuson. 'This law had nothing to do with ensuring integrity and everything to do with undermining the union movement's ability to protect workers' rights. While this is a victory, we are sure that more attacks will follow, and we will be ready to support our Australian sisters and brothers in resistance.'

The BWI thanks its affiliates around the world in supporting the campaign in Australia.