CFMEU at centre of debate over foreign workers
The decision to allow Gina Reinhart to bring 1,700 unskilled construction workers into the country has ignited fierce debate.
Experience has shown that guest labour is used by employers to undermine local wages and conditions.
Since the news broke, Dave Noonan, CFMEU National Construction Secretary has been all over the media, making some important points:
- At present, employers wanting to import workers do not have to prove they have exhausted all options to meet their labour needs within Australia. They can simply hire a consultant to write a "Labour Market Analysis".
- Plenty of fit and able Australian workers are being knocked back for jobs in the resource sector as companies eye off mass importing of overseas workers. This point is being made repeatedly by callers to talkback radio, in letters to newspapers and in blog comments.
- Youth unemployment in the suburbs of Australian cities is over 20 per cent and these kids are being denied opportunities while mining multinationals make mega profits off Australian resources. At present mining companies are under no obligation to provide training for local workers.
- The CFMEU supports immigration - in fact we are a union of migrants and their chidren - and has always stood up against racism, including the scapegoating of refugees by John Howard. Attempts to play the racism card against the CFMEU will fail.
Read Dave Noonan's Article on The Drum website
Listen to Dave debate a rep from the miner's lobby on Radio National
Check the CFMEU National Office website for further updates.
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