The Carey affair again exposes the Achilles heel of the U.S. labour movement – its class-collaborationists, co-dependent relationship with the Democratic Party.
The Federal ALP introduced enterprise bargaining in 1991 to replace the pre-existing centralised “wage fixing” system. No longer do workers get regular wage adjustments. Instead, the only way of getting so-called wage “increases” is by “bargaining” with the boss. With the deck stacked against us.
WorkCover terrorises injured workers. The Kennett government’s WorkCover legislation strips away any lingering illusions about how far capitalism will go to secure profit by sacrificing the workers who produce it.
The connection between workers and users of public and community sector services is a natural alliance. The demands of the More, Not Less campaign, adopted at its public meeting in August 1991, reflects the diversity of support and the unity of our struggles.
For more than 80 years the working class in this country has been shackled to the capitalists through the Conciliation and Arbitration Commission. This has held workers back, kept them impoverished, derailed their attempts to break the chains. The Accord, which is the parent of the new wage system is the latest attempt to clothe the emperor.
We must all encourage and build the leadership of the most oppressed within the struggle. This task is all to clear in the public sector where, in many industries, women are a clear majority yet, almost without exception, we are, as a group, at the bottom of the heap.
The activist Special Interest Group model within the structure of the union has resulted in significant gains for casual workers in the NSW TAFE system. It is a model TAFE workers in other states must consider.