In a bid to allow employees the opportunity to independently assess the Howard government’s WorkChoices ‘fact sheet’ Greens Cr Chris Harris successfully convinced the City of Sydney Council to offer all employees the United Services Union alternative ‘fact sheet.’
Under legislation, (Workplace Relations Amendment - A stronger safety net) Act 2007) if an employer does not send employees the WorkChoices ‘fact sheet’ by October 20 they can be penalised $110 per employee.
Cr Harris: “I wanted to give our employees an informed choice on their rights at work. My motion requested that the United Services Union, which covers most City employees, prepare a fact sheet that presented an alternative view of the WorkChoices legislation. I also requested that the CEO send this alternative fact sheet to all City of Sydney employees.
“The spin the Howard government put on the “fact sheet” was that it provided ‘independent advice’. But the Workplace Authority is the only place employees can go for advice about the workplace system. Hardly independent.
“Also recent research from respected academics has shown some of the claims in the government’s ‘fact sheet’ are wrong or at the very least highly questionable,” said Cr Harris.
“I believe it is important that employees have an opportunity to hear just how damaging WorkChoices is to the working conditions and wages of ordinary working people and I want people to know that The Greens have promised to use the votes of their senators in the new Federal Parliament to repeal Workchoices legislation that has stripped tens of thousands of workers of their hard fought for conditions.
“I am also pleased that the council fully supported my motion and the Union agreed to prepare the alternative fact sheet which was sent to the homes of all council employees this week,” Cr Harris said.