Title: Defend worker’s rights
Subtitle: Defeat Howard’s anti-union laws
Date: June 4, 2005
Source: Retrieved on 10th October 2021 from anarkismo.net
Notes: This is a leaflet distributed in a mass union delegates meeting in Melbourne last March.
  • If we don’t fight, we lose. Howard fights to win and so should we. Lying low won’t save us and neither will running a PR campaign or waiting for a Labor government. Only direct action will do it, either by making Howard back down or by turning his laws into a dead letter. We have to inform our workmates, our friends & families and our communities, since they won’t read the truth in the Herald-Sun.

  • Howard will be back for more. Destroying the unions is his life’s work. He’s already said that passing the laws previously held up by the Senate is only the first instalment. With the Business Council, the press and all the Right-wing think tanks baying for blood, Howard will go as far as we let him. If we sit back & cop it, the anti-union laws will just keep coming & coming.

  • The rank & file must control the dispute. We need regular delegates’ meetings to direct the campaign, combined with workplace meetings to brief the members & get instructions from them. There must be no repeat of the 1992–93 campaign against Kennett’s anti-union laws. The ACTU nobbled that dispute and Trades Hall caved in — even though we had Kennett on the ropes (as he admitted himself later on). The officials’ job is to work, not to make decisions over our heads. They’re responsible for the mess the union movement is in now, so letting them run the show in our hour of danger is inviting disaster.

  • Solidarity & direct democracy beat competition & hierarchy For workers to fight the bosses’ attacks, we need solidarity & direct democracy. For a society with freedom & equality for all, we also need solidarity & direct democracy. By re-forging our unions on these principles, we build the new society in the shell of the old.