Members of the National Union of Workers have won a stunning victory against an Australian furniture retailer. The workers had been locked out by the Super A-mart warehouse in Melbourne since the 7th of March, after a one-day strike in support of a bar …

Walton Pantland Oceania, NUW,

superamart

Members of the National Union of Workers have won a stunning victory against an Australian furniture retailer. The workers had been locked out by the Super A-mart warehouse in Melbourne since the 7th of March, after a one-day strike in support of a bargaining agreement. They have maintained pickets outside the store ever since, and received a wave of solidarity and support.

Among the issues the workers were standing against were pay disparity, health and safety issues and discrimination against union members. The company obtained an injunction against picketing “agents of the NUW”, but this did nothing to dent their resolve.

As this excellent analysis in the Guardian points out, this was a precedent-setting dispute with serious consequence for workers in Australia. Super A-mart workers were challenging the arrogance of their company, which believed it had the right to speed up the labour process with no regard for health and safety, and to lock out workers who protested against it.

Yesterday, the company caved in to their demands.

After fighting for almost six weeks, the workers now have union rights, improved redundancy, casual conversion after 6 months, an OHS committee and a 10% wage increase over 3 years + $750 sign on bonus.

Congratulations to these National Union of Workers members for proving that by sticking together you win.

Super A-mart workers celebrate their win. Solidarity!

 


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Walton Pantland

South African trade unionist living in Glasgow. Loves whisky, wine, running and the great outdoors. Walton did an MA in Industrial Relations at Ruskin, Oxford, and is interested in how trade unions use new technology to organise.

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