Fair Work Australia Stuffed up again:- Workers Face Jail.

West Australian union boss Kevin Reynolds says industrial relations in Australia are “stuffed” as construction workers still face legal action despite reaching a compromise in their dispute.

More than 1,500 fly-in, fly-out workers are facing fines of up to $28,000 as well as jail time over strikes at Woodside Petroleum’s Pluto gas project in WA’s north in late 2009.

Contractors have taken action in the Federal Court against the individual workers who participate in the strike which ended in January.

Mr Reynolds, WA secretary of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU), says the workers face fines of up to $28,000 under two pieces of legislation.

Many of them won’t be able to afford the fine, and the union would struggle to cover any costs, which could potentially reach more than $40 million, he said.

“They wanted to teach the workers a lesson, that’s what they’re saying to us. It’s not very good for the future of industrial relations in this country.”

Mr Reynolds said the Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s Fair Work Australia legislation had allowed workers to face such penalties.

Read the full story in “The Sydney Morning Herald”

Seems the unions can’t afford to help out the workers, but the unions seem to be able to afford to spend millions on advertising to try to get Labor re-elected. All this happened because of the strike that the workers had, did the unions tell the workers what might happen if they striked? Or did they just vote on the strike, and the unions said OK? Something is definitely not right with this. It seems another flaw in Julia’s IR laws.

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10 Responses to Fair Work Australia Stuffed up again:- Workers Face Jail.

  1. Sue says:

    Why didn’t the workers know what would happen if they went on strike? I agree with you if the unions can afford to spend up big time on the election, they can certainly help out the workers, after all isn’t this the reason we pay union fees.

    • magsx2 says:

      Hi Sue,
      It all seems really wrong doesn’t it, when the company’s can start to sue the workers for lost production, what sort of IR laws are these when things like this can happen. All workers should know about this, the unions should of known this could happen. Well I hope a lot of people saw this in the paper, and are now aware.

  2. malc50 says:

    On a different topic, magsx2 – have you seen the Chasers War on Everything’s Tony Abbott parody? If not, you may like to visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5tak98SUHO8

  3. malc50 says:

    For serious (?) Australian Federal Election 2010 comment, go to:



    Best Regards magsx2, Cheers Mal.

    • magsx2 says:

      Hi malc50,
      I enjoyed the radio Julia spillard, but the second one, I just couldn’t get to the end of the 10mins, too much babble, he started off good, but went on too much I felt. 🙂

      • malc50 says:

        Hi magsx2, You’re right magsx2, it was too long – just like politicians’ speeches, but I hoped you made it as far as stopping the Department of Defence’s monopoly – you couldn’t get any more ridiculous than that. (I’m watching the guy from Better Homes and Gardens dancing with the stars as I type this on my laptop.)

  4. magsx2 says:

    Hi malc50,
    No I didn’t get to that part, will have to have another go at watching it tomorrow. Your right about politicians speeches.
    Your lucky you have a laptop, I’ve got a desk top, so I’m not in the loungeroom, but my Husband is watching the 24hr news on the ABC. Laptops are so convenient, it doesn’t matter where you are, you have access.

    • malc50 says:

      Hi magsx2, I’m lucky to have a son who is tech-savvy. We have two desk-tops in a computer room ( a spare bedroom ). One is obsolete (2002 vintage), but occasionally I want to access something from its hard-drive. My son has set me up with a wireless connection for my laptop to the desktops’ modem. I can watch TV in the lounge room and surf the internet during the ads, and play spider solitaire when the show is less than exciting.

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