Monday, February 26, 2007

Political Intern gets prosposed to while meeting top brass

Excitement reached new heights last week when the participants from Chris Evans Labour Movement Work Experience programme met Western Australian Premier Alan Carpenter and State Labor Party president Sharryn Jackson.

After meeting the top brass and their army of spin doctors, passion broake out in the centre of Perth though a rally against the poor treatment of cleaners in the CBD.

As a play on the Valentine’s Day theme, a very public show of love was expressed by the Liquor, Hospitality and Miscellaneous Union which included a dramatic marriage proposal being made on the busiest street in Perth at lunch time as part of protest.

Roses and chocolates were handed out to passers by to bring attention to the poor wages and conditions that the cleaners have to put up with.

The high drama tactic was used by the union asked the tenants of number 77 St George’s Tce to share the love with those who clean and part of their “Clean Start” campaign.

This piece of street drama appeared in the inside cover of the West Australian Newspaper.

All this took place during a ministerial placement during which I spent the week at the Office of the Minister of Planning and Infrastructure, Alannah Mactiernan.

Much of my time was spent working on documents relating to government legislation and the appointment of boards and committees but also to research some Freedom of Information issues.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Time to share the cake Howard, there’s enough to go around

During Prime Minister John Howard's recent trip to Perth, Western Australia's peak Union body, Union WA provided his community morning tea with 'Your-rights-at-work' cakes with orange icing.

Union WA were protesting about Work Choices, rules that make it easier to sack staff for no reason and allowing individual contacts which cut wages and conditions.

All of which provide a bigger slice of the cake to the employer and little to the employee.

"Despite a booming economy and soaring wages of CEOs, more and more Australians are being left behind under Howard's unfair workplace laws. It is time for Australians to get a bigger slice of the cake" said Simone McGurk, Assistant Secretary of Unions WA.

Working Australians are just getting the crumbs.

The Howard government believe that they are responsible for economic growth, while real wages fail to rise with the cost of living.

Howard, it's time to go.
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