- The Guardian
- Issue #2009
The Australian Labor Party is on track to win seventy-seven seats in the House of Representatives, securing majority government for the first time since 2010, under Prime Minister Anthony Albanese. While the Liberals have had a near-catastrophic collapse, the ALP received a low primary vote and even lost two seats in an election marked by a record rejection of the two-party system. Voters want change. Workers are facing a crisis after a lost decade under Coalition rule. Wages have stagnated, workplace and union rights have been attacked, work is increasingly insecure, and living costs have exploded. But struggle doesn’t end at the ballot box. Workers need to take to the streets, organise and continue to fight for our rights. Only through united struggle can we make ourselves heard and win what we deserve.
The Communist Party of Australia Logistics and Manufacturing Branch Calls For:
- The unrestricted right to strike, unrestricted right of entry for union officials
- A 35-hour work week without loss of pay, forty per cent increase to minimum wage
- The right to bargain across an entire industry
- Union negotiated collective industry agreements in every workplace
- Pay equality for all regardless of gender or visa status
- Rights for workplace union representatives
- Full employment and the right to secure jobs with full entitlements
- Criminalise wage theft
- Union representatives on company boards elected by the workers
- Support and advance Australia’s manufacturing industry
- End unjust automation, retrain and provide new secure jobs for workers
- Nationalise key sectors of the economy
- Abolition of TAFE and university fees, increase public school funding
- A more democratic political system elected by proportional representation
- An Indigenous voice to parliament
- An Integrity Commission with teeth, media reform
- Increase Medicare funding, expand PBS, free dental care
- Strong action on climate change
- Substantial increases in public housing stock, rent controls for private
- Nationalise public transport and toll roads, expand public transport
- Independent and peaceful foreign policy, quit AUKUS and ANZUS
THE “NEW” LABOR GOVERNMENT
Prime Minister Albanese’s Labor government ran on a Liberal-lite platform of minimal change. While we welcome the booting of the corrupt Coalition, the ALP cannot be trusted to carry out progressive reforms without pressure from the organised working class. Workers need to get organised and take to the streets. Only through continued struggle can workers hold Labor to account and win reforms.
THE “NEW” LIBERAL PARTY
The Liberal Party has been deservedly rejected. Not only did they lose seats to Labor, but six blue-ribbon seats fell to teal independents. The blatant corruption, sexism, and climate denialism has proved too much for even the Liberal Party’s traditional base. Yet the Liberals have moved even further to the right, electing far-right Peter Dutton as leader. Despite blatant media attempts to rehabilitate his image, don’t be fooled. We need to keep the Coalition out of politics for good!
One Nation and United Australia’s combined vote of nine per cent is concerning. While neither picked up any seats in the House, One Nation secured a seat giving it two. We need to combat the growth of far-right politics before it’s too late. Fascists need to be kicked out of parliament for good!
THE NEW AUSTRALIAN PARLIAMENT
After a record 31.2 per cent of voters gave non-major parties their first preference, the new parliament is set to have a crossbench of sixteen members. Progressives are set to have a majority in the Senate, with Labor, the Greens, and David Pocock able to pass bills without right-wing obstruction. The success of the Greens in Brisbane and the Senate is a positive development and shows that Labor cannot continue to take the Left for granted. The two-party system is undemocratic. We need to push for a new system that better represents the people’s demand for change.
OUR INDUSTRY AND THE GOVERNMENT
We need serious reforms. We need to give power back to our unions after decades of attacks. We need better pay, secure work, functioning social services, and affordable housing. We need to invest in Australian industry, fight against unjust automation, and bring manufacturing back to Australia. We need urgent climate action. But we can’t forget the limits of electoral politics. Reforms cannot be won through parliament alone. We need to build and strengthen the mass movement in workplaces and on the streets. We need to make ourselves heard through grassroots campaigning and direct action. Most importantly, we need to fight for a new system that truly represents workers’ interests!