A virus drives a pivot to manufacturing!

For 42 years the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union, manufacturing workers, and the majority of Australians with common sense, have been saying that it is not rational to use Australia’s mining resources to diminish the role of manufacturing in our society.

In the main their rational thinking and proposals (in the case of the AMWU, see below) to maintain and develop our manufacturing voice have been ignored – especially by Liberal National Party governments – or downgraded, relative to free trade policy, as has been the case with the Australian Labor Party.

The union has consistently stood up for manufacturing workers and for Australian society over those years, using a variety of methods and tactics. They have been more consistent and insistent than anyone else.

The covid19 virus, presumably not a being with intellectual capacity, has proven them correct.

So much so, the Morrison LNP government, steeped in a long history of hostility to manufacturing and the AMWU, has announced a “pivot” to manufacturing. (Before the virus spread the Australian economy was drifting into a recession that would have become more apparent by around mid year. There is no way that, in that circumstance alone, this government would have considered the restoration of manufacturing as part of its anti-recession response.)

A national manufacturing task force has been created, dominated by business “leaders”, although the National Secretary of the AMWU has been appointed as a sole union voice.

Paul Bastian recently explained what could be done quickly to begin the restoration of manufacturing as an essential part of the Australian economy, instead of a coincidental afterthought.

These are the Union’s preliminary proposals for the immediate situation. However, the AMWU’s capacity used to go way beyond that.

Here you will find a quick history of AMWU and other union interventions in the struggle to maintain a strong manufacturing base founded on a skilled and well paid workforce.

Building Our Navy Ships in Australia: navy uniforms and patriotism

Yesterday, I joined with a bunch of metalworkers who work in Australia’s shipbuilding industry to hand out leaflets about building the next fleet of Australia’s navy ships in Australia, instead of spending taxpayers dollars to import from other countries.
Its pretty simple, you would have thought: Australia is an island nation and we have the capability to do the job. We have been campaigning for the past 9 months to get the federal government to commit to building the next fleet of 48 ships worth about $250b. over 25 years, and we are continuing our campaign just as vigorously with the new conservative government. (For more info CLICK HERE Continue reading “Building Our Navy Ships in Australia: navy uniforms and patriotism”

Who is FAIR DINKUM about saving manufacturing jobs?

Mainstream media has precious little time to consistently report – with due respect – the efforts of manufacturing workers to save the industry and defend their jobs.

But every week the AMWU reports what AMWU members are striving to do to challenge the threats.

Here are 2 great examples of manufacturing union members defending and creating new jobs.

http://www.amwu.org.au/read-article/news-detail/1201/Goulburn-Valley-bites-back-at-food-industry-crisis/

http://www.amwu.org.au/read-article/news-detail/1200/Tassie%60s-north-signs-on-to-secure-jobs/