Manufacturing Alliance Meets With Tassie Workers

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30th November 2009, 09:00am - Views: 1321

Media Release

Monday 30 November 2009

Media Alert

Embargoed: Monday 30th November, 2009

Manufacturing Alliance meets with Tassie workers

Australia's two largest blue collar unions are in Tasmania today as part of a
national campaign to secure manufacturing jobs for the future. The Australian
Workers' Union (AWU) and the Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union (AMWU)
represent over 250,000 workers and have members in almost every town in Australia.

AWU National Secretary Paul Howes and AMWU National Secretary Dave Oliver said the
right government policy was crucial to ensure plants like Cement Australia
continued to thrive.

"Cement Australia is a good company that has worked particularly hard to ensure
health and safety standards and to reduce risk from asbestosis for workers," Mr
Oliver said.

"But times are still tough for manufacturing firms. Over 2000 full time
manufacturing jobs have been lost in Tasmania over the last year, and 77,000 jobs
have disappeared nationwide over the past year.

"Tasmanian firms like ACL, Bradken, Cadbury and McCain vegetable processing have
all cut hours, jobs or closed down completely. Direct job cuts from firms like
Caterpillar also had knock on effects on smaller shops like Maltec Engineering,
Coastal Engineering and Belting.

"The most important thing we can do is to make sure we have a fair go procurement
policy in place to give Australian manufacturers the ability to supply large-scale
infrastructure projects and tenders," said Mr Oliver.

AWU National Secretary Paul Howes said that meeting with members to discuss
innovation, investment and skills was an important step for the future.

"We are talking to workers, explaining how this alliance will be fighting for the
issues that concern them, to protect this valuable industry from years of economic
degradation and neglect by the previous government," said Mr Howes.

For more information or for interviews please contact:
AWU: Paul Howes on 0407 041 933
AWU Media: Andrew Casey 0417 054 194
AMWU: Dave Oliver on 0419 289 261
AMWU Media: Anaya Latter on 0432 121 636

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