NO IFS, NO BUTS – WE’LL BUST THE BUDGET CUTS
A mass of ACTU affiliates joined tens of thousands of unionists and community on the streets of Melbourne yesterday as community outrage against the Abbott Budget just keeps snowballling.
Determined workers travelled hunderds of kilometres from across the state of Victoria to join the “Bust the Budget” rally, Australia’s largest trade union march so far against the Abbott Budget.
In Sydney it was standing room only as thousands of union delegates packed out the Masonic Centre to join the national resistance to savage cuts to industry programs, education, health systems and pensions.
In Victoria, over 20 busloads of Australian Manufacturing Worker Union members from regional Victoria joined their AMWU comrades from across Melbourne.
Five city blocks were jammed with more than 20,000 unionists making their way from Trades Hall in Carlton to the steps of State Parliament, chanting: “They say cutback – we say FIGHT BACK!”
ACTU Secretary Dave Oliver paid tribute to hundreds of Williamstown dockyard workers at the rally, fighting the Abbott Government’s offshoring the building of two navy supply ships.
Mr Oliver warned the Abbott Government that this was only the start of “the mother of all union campaigns” to protect Australian workers against cuts to hard won wages and conditions.
The fight to retain penalty rates, to stop individual contracts, to save pensioners and apprentices from vicious cuts which would cost them dearly, would not cease until the Coalition Government was thrown out of office.
He said it was a fight for Australia to retain its living standards, to remain the nation of the traditional “fair go” for all.
“There is only one way to protect the Australia we know, the fair go for everyone, and that is to get rid of this Abbott Government,” he said.
Meetings in Sydney and Melbourne determined there will be no respite, with the next Bust the Budget rally on Saturday, July 6.