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Issue #1459      16 June 2010

Horsham workers lose patience

Workers at CMI Industries in Horsham last week took part in a four-hour stoppage after failed negotiations towards a new Enterprise Agreement, and lingering questions over payment of superannuation.

The stoppage came after a Fair Work Australia ballot for protected industrial action was declared.

Australian Workers’ Union (AWU) Victorian secretary Cesar Melhem said workers at CMI had taken action after years of tolerating poor outcomes and treatment by the company.

“These are workers who have put up with a lot over a long time. They have given the company the benefit of the doubt on every occasion and as a result missed out on the increases they deserved,” Mr Melhem said.

 “It is time to get a fair outcome at CMI and for the issues to be addressed in the same way as they would be for workers in other parts of the state. It is difficult not to reach the conclusion that they have been taken advantage of because of their good nature,” he said.

AWU organiser Ronnie Hayden said the workers had exercised extreme patience in their quest for a new EBA, after their last one expired about two years ago.

“This is a group of people who are simply looking for answers to questions that should have been resolved a long time ago,” Mr Hayden said. 

Industrial action was planned for January this year, but was cancelled as a sign of good faith.

“CMI should recognise that good faith and settle these matters as soon as possible,” Mr Hayden said.  

Next article – The Education Agenda – Why our teacher’s are prepared to keep fighting (Part 1)

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