Respected Guardian columnist Van Badham believes the renewal of leadership within Australia's union movement derails the tired old conservative cliche of "faceless men" ruling over Australia's 1.7 million union members.
Recently the ABC television show Four Corners provided some much needed attention to the abuse of migrant workers by some Australian employers. The episode of Four Corners entitled “Slaving Away” illustrates three major problems facing the Australian workforce:
- the abuse of guest workers resulting in undercutting existing conditions and workplace rights;
- labour hire companies being used by major corporations to avoid their legal obligations; and
- major retailers and fast food corporations turning a “blind eye” to illegal work practices in their supply chain.