Over 200,000 people have protested at the anti-hoWARd government rally in Melbourne, with at least 150,000 or more in other capital cities and in regional centres throughout Australia.
Huge crowds packed into Federation Square in Melbourne this morning.
Protesters marched across the city to the Carlton Gardens, where Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) secretary Martin Kingham said the rally was a huge success.
"Looks like 200,000 to me - the biggest industrial rally that I've ever seen in Melbourne," he said.
Thousands of building workers attended the rally despite the threat of a $22,000 fine each for taking part.
Australian Workers Union (AWU) secretary Bill Shorten says today's rallies are just the beginning of a campaign against the Howard Government.
"You asked what is the strategy for the next 700 days - the strategy is to fight - to fight in the workplace, to fight in the community, to fight in the media and to get rid of the Howard Government," he said.
In Brisbane, over 10,000 workers marched through the inner-city to the Queensland National party headquarters to protest against the industrial relations laws.
The protesters had earlier gathered at Southbank to hear the Queensland Premier Peter Beattie and union leaders speak.
In Sydney, trucks and demonstrators blocked a major motorway as part of the protest.
New South Wales Transport Workers Union secretary Tony Sheldon says protesters on the M4 motorway wanted to draw attention to the impact they say the laws will have on the trucking industry.
"They're determined to protect motorists, their loved ones, their next door neighbours from the excesses of the Howard legislation that's going to cause more and more deregulation of the trucking industry and more unsafe rates and unsafe practices while there's a drive to the bottom," he said.
As expected the Labor Party bureaucrats were out in force to capitalise on the discontent for their careerist ambitions but interestingly the video of Bob Brown got a much bigger cheer than that of Kim Beazley, a nice contrast to the previous demo where workers were seen chanting "beazley, beazley".
Huge crowds certainly put a smile on most people's faces
By Shame HoWARd Shame 15 November 05
Workers rally against Industrial Relations law
SYDNEY, Tuesday, 15 November: "Hundreds of thousands" of workers rallied in a day of national protest against the Howard Government's new industrial relations law.
In Sydney, a rally comprising "a genuine cross-section of the Australian community", and estimated by the ABC's reporter at "maybe 40,000", met at Belmore Park before marching though the city to Chifley Square to hear speakers against Howard's law.
An exuberant and very noisy march left observers in no doubt as to their resolve. At one point, there was an unnecessary diversion when some of the marchers taunted the visiting Uruguayan footballers, who were watching the procession in George Street.
A single handwritten banner, "Say NO to working poor", summarised the thrust of the new legislation, which Victoria's Premier Bracks declared had been the lot of many workers following the regressive legislation in that state by the former Kennett government.
The new laws have been an obsession of Prime Minister Howard for many years, and, contrary to its stated intention--to usher is a new era of "choice" in the workplace--promise to ignite more nation-wide protests from unions, who see the legislation as stripping away a century of hard-won rights for workers.
Opposition leader Kim Beazley promised a Brisbane rally, estimated by ABC reporters at about 10,000, that, if elected, he would "stand on the steps of Parliament and rip these laws up".
ACTU President Sharan Burrow told the Melbourne rally, which unions put at 150,000 to 200,000 (ABC Midday News), that the unions were defending "values that shape the way we care about each another". "We must not be the first generation of Australians who leaves our kids with fewer rights at work than we inherited, and we won't", she said.
By Roy Garner 15 November 05
Hundreds of thousands rally against IR legislation
People rallied in 300 locations accross Australia today to protest the Federal Government's proposed changes to industrial relations laws, WorkChoices. According to police, around 150,000 people congregated in Melbourne, from where speeches were broadcast throughout the country. In Sydney, thirty thousand gathered in Belmore Park and Martin Place to watch the broadcast before marching to Chifley Square.
Australia: Why I went to the rally today
"I actually asked to speak at the rally because all of this makes me really angry, " said 27 year old Misty Matthews, who now works as a cleaner and patient support in a government hospital.
House passes IR bill after debate gagged
The House of Representatives has passed the Federal Government's industrial relations (IR) bill after debate on the legislation was gagged.
Brisbane to protest HoWARd at charity function
If you're in Brisbane and would like to let the PM know what you think about his IR reforms, treatment of refugees, social services reforms, terror laws, destruction of the environment, pro-nuclear stance or the myriad other anti-social things Howard and his government has done: Join us! Let him always be reminded that we know his government is founded on lies: WMD lies, children overboard lies, terror lies.
Australia: Right to strike to go
'The right of workers to leave their jobs is a test of freedom. Hitler suppressed strikes. Stalin suppressed strikes. But each also suppressed freedom. There are some things worse than strikes, much worse than strikes - one of them is the loss of freedom.' US President Eisenhower.
Unfair Industrial Laws: It's up to you!
When the WorkChoices legislation was before Parliament, GetUp members sent emails to Senators Barnaby Joyce and Steven Fielding asking them to stay strong and independent. This was followed up with a national telephone campaign.
Australia: Caught in a poverty trap
ONE of the delights of watching a superhero movie, be it of the bat or spider variety, is when the grotesque machinery developed and demonstrated by the hero's foes is turned back on them with typically devastating results.
Costello's anti-Job Network weapons discovered?
THE Federal Government had cut $500 million in funding to private sector employment agencies to ensure taxpayers received value for money, Treasurer Peter Costello said?
Pity Labor Couldn't be United over Social Services Cuts?
HoWARd/Costello (funny fellow) Big Mac and Small Fries. And Beazely's Kentucky Fried Two Piece Snack Box for those on minimum wages who should be enjoying - better Medicare Rebates, Public Housing, Hospitals, Education and Transport Infrastructure but instead get just $6.00.
Happy mothers day: Single mums forced to work!
AUSTRALIA can no longer sustain its warfare system, but can sustain the social dollar and that depends on where your priorities are? USA/Iraq or Australia?
HoWARd Gov't could be slued, community warns
Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) members will join a rally in Victoria Square today, protesting against the anticipated changes to workplace relations.
Work for the dole and prison industry slavery
Work for the dole certainly offers a lot of variety. The impression given by the government is that most unemployed do creative and helpful work assisting the community.
'Social Services cheats' may face election next time around
The Federal fascist HoWARd Government is attacking the poor and underprivileged again (on all fronts - now including social services, disabled, single mothers, Medicare rebate and IVF treatment.
Single parents deserve a living wage and not persecution
Being a single parent is hard work. It means a lot of responsibility. But you are not paid properly to do this work. You are paid way below what is recognised as the poverty line. StandUp! Believes that looking after a child is a job and should be paid for like any other job.
Labor sees problems in welfare proposals
The Federal Opposition says proposed changes to Australia's welfare system are a cost-cutting measure and will leave disability and sole parent pensioners worse off.
Dismantle the war machine, slash taxes, privatisation and keep social services The Centre for Independent Studies report says the flat-rate income tax of 10 per cent would ensure most Australians could afford to pay for essential services such as health and education, instead of relying on welfare [social service] payments.
Costello to force single mums to look for work?
SINGLE mothers would be forced to look for work once their children reached school age, under a draconian welfare package outlined last night by fascist Pastor Peter Costello to bolster funds to spend on military hardware and the ongoing illegal and degrading war in Iraq.
The HoWARd Government is simply robbing the disabled blind
KERRY O'BRIEN: Federal cabinet adjourned today still undecided about the final formula for what has become politically one of the toughest reform challenges the Government will face this term. For the past two decades, the disability support pension has been one of the fastest growing welfare payments [social security payments.]
Encouragement is the key to social-services-to-work programs
Corporate Welfare! I think we should start with Ingeus Company. Telling us what we already know for $$$$!
Peter Saunders shake-up is long overdue: Welfare Not Warfare
Peter Saunders: Many DSP claimants are older men with limited skills who have had difficulty finding work?
Welfare Reform for Warfare Expenditure?
John Howard: "Self-evidently we would have liked the major combat to have gone differently ... [but] coalition withdrawal or defeat is unimaginable."
Govt plots post-July strategy?
Fascist Prime Minister insists he is not on a mission to punish welfare recipients [social services.]
HoWARd 'determined' to make the disabled woRK?
The Federal Government is considering a system of "coercion" and incentive to force the disabled to work. But what happened to 6 billion-budget surpluses? Why do they need to force disabled people to work? Do they need more money and less disabled people? Or do would they rather spend the money on WAR?
Opposition pension claims valid
The Federal Governments secret agenda to cut pensions, including the disability and single parent payments while spending billions on military hardware is just too much for most disabled people to accept.
Thousands march for disability protest
"We are not prepared to go back to the dark ages. This has to be reversed," Mr Preston said. "We are hoping that the community sees that we shouldn't be taking money from people with disabilities. These people have had it tough all their lives (and) there is already more unmet need than we can cope with."
Howard's Job Network Bailout
Up to 670,000 people on disability support pensions will be encouraged to sign up to the Job Network under a radical new plan to get disabled people off welfare and into work.
THE HILLSONG'S ARE ALIVE WITH THE SOUND OF ' NEO-LIBERALISM' Only a bent mind would envisage the possibility or think of the concept that a '2nd Neo-Liberal 'front' promoted by the right and posing as a Church would enter politics under the flag of "Family First Party".
Costello, Howard's Disciple
JOHN HOWARD AND PETER Costello lost their vision for Australia from the time they were elected and embarked on a vision for the neo-Liberals.
Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel?
Well praise the Lord the light is Hell bent here on Peter Costello, treasurer of the Howard Government who now has his own "flock" of onward Christian Soldiers.
Corporate welfare or how to steal social services?
Ever wondered why there are so many homeless, why we need a 10 pc GST, lack of services for mental disability, still paying off the Olympics, poor public transport planning etc etc etc?
Work for the dole is legal slavery
Work for the dole was originally sold to us by Howard as a warm and fuzzy light work project. We would be working for nothing but we would be enjoying giving back something to the community, so it was reckoned.
Peter Costello commended this result in his budget speech. Even if we were to believe this figure it still means more than half a million living at a level much lower than that is recognised as poverty.
Mark Latham's, token gestures for older unemployed
StandUp appreciates the fact that Mark Latham is concerned about older unemployed people. His specialist job network proposal aimed at older people might provide a bit of assistance.
Work for the dole failure for two thirds
THE Un-Australian: " MORE than a third of the people who completed the Howard Government's work-for-the-dole programs last year were in jobs or studying within three months of finishing.
Work for the dole? $10.00?
StandUp! Wishes to draw your attention to a serious attack on all of us--work for the dole. We were assured that unemployed would not be forced to work in areas where employed workers would normally be employed. This has shown to be a lie! Under work for the dole, unemployed have been forced to carry out; concreting, tiling, landscaping, repairs, renovation, painting, gardening, nurses and teachers aid work.
'WORK FOR THE DOLE' REDUCES JOB PROSPECTS
A major independent study commissioned by the Government and released today under Freedom of Information by The Australian newspaper indicates that the 'Work for the Dole' program actually reduces the job prospects of unemployed people.
Youth welfare system unfair: ACOSS
The Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) is warning urgent action is needed to fix youth poverty and disincentives for the unemployed to improve their job prospects.
Bringing up children Can we afford it?
Peter Costello expects us to carry out our patriotic duty by going home and having more children. But for most people it is a struggle to bring up one child let alone two or three.
Federal Budget: Tax cuts for the rich!
For the Howard government, unemployed people are not even worth thinking about.
Private job network agency blues
Can you trust a private job network agency? No you can't! A friend of ours is registered at MTC Marrickville.
Indigenous Social Justice Association Djadi Dugarang
INDIGENOUS EMPLOYMENT. Part 1
Centrelink puts the screws on prison debt
A 1999 study by the Brisbane Prisoners Legal Service revealed that on leaving prisoners had an average debt of $14,031. Almost one in five had a debt to Centrelink while in prison. This debt arose as a result inability to cancel things such as leases, Social Security payments, utilities and telephones.
Democrats approve tougher welfare penalties: But how does that pan out?
There used to be an old saying in Australia" if your hungry steal a sheep and leave the pelt on the fence.
Six weeks, six months, six years: inmates have little chance of making fresh start Even prisoners who serve short sentences are likely to suffer long-term consequences, including increased rates of homelessness and unemployment.
Howard: We as a nation have got to invest heavily in defence?
Fascist Prime Minister John HoWARd has indicated the Government will make major changes to work place laws, cut disability support forcing the disabled to work and increase his defence commitment.
Hill primed for war!
Australian Caretaker Defence Minister Robert Hill has announced a multi-million dollar upgrade of the Pearce Air Force base in Western Australia. Hill says $87 million would be spent on a major upgrade of the base, which is Australia's main flying training facility.
Troop deployment not a deepening of effort: Hill
Deploying an extra 30 troops to Iraq was not a deepening of Australia's involvement because they were being sent to protect those already there, Defence Minister Robert Hill said yesterday.
Auditor Generals damning defence report
The Defence Department computer system upgrade has cost Australia tens of millions of dollars in a gigantic bungle, according to the Federal Opposition. The Commonwealth auditor-general has issued a damning report into the project.
Govt, police 'let off the hook' Haneef inquiry
8 years ago