The Null Device

No more smoko

Rubbing their hands with glee, the Australian government reveal that not only will their industrial-relations reforms scrap unfair dismissal laws and reduce holiday entitlements to 10 days a year (well, officially, allow workers the freedom of cashing in 10 days, but when this decision is written into employment contracts and there's always someone behind you willing to sign if you're not, your chances of keeping four weeks of leave are looking somewhat slimmer), but also to allow workers to trade away their lunch breaks for more money. Again, similar provisos come into it: there won't be a guarantee of those wishing to keep lunch breaks being able to do so.
"The reason why many of them are much happier to work say a 36-hour week without smokos is because you leave for home earlier ... what we want to do is give people maximum flexibility in relation to hours and the right to negotiate."
Hang on, isn't Australia already on a 38-hour week, or is the choice between 40+ hours with lunch breaks or 36 hours without them?

Now it looks like two right-wing senators (one from Christian Fundamentalist party Family First and one from the right-wing lesser partner in the governing coalition, the National Party) are making noises about blocking the changes on grounds of family values.

How much do you want to bet that the Tories will attempt to trade them a wowseristic legislated-morality campaign unconnected with workers' rights (i.e., tougher censorship laws, minor symbolic restrictions on abortion, perhaps even the national internet firewall Family First wanted) in return for their cooperation in this matter?

There are 1 comments on "No more smoko":

Posted by: steff Sat Jul 30 00:19:40 2005

It's grim.