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Brereton must remove threat of unionisation



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Federal Member for La Trobe

ACTAVG SHADOW M N STS FOB INDU TRIAL BFJATIONS

JR 026/93

BRERETON MUST REMOVE THREAT OF UNIONISA'T'ION

The Minister for Industrial Relations, Mr Brereton,, must immediately dispel the notion that he intends to spread enterprise agreements by increasing unionisation of the workforce.

Both the Prime Minister, Mr Keating, and Mr Brereton have acknowledged the need to have all employees covered by enterprise agreements.

Each also has acknowledged that the requirement that unions be parties to agreements and the low rate of unionisation of the workforce are two factors combining to prevent the spread of agreements.

In his most recent pronouncement, Mr arereton said that *means of spreading agreements in the non-union sector must also be addressed^.

The ACTU is denying that the prospect of union involvement is discouraging the spread of enterprise bargaining to the non-unionised sector. And spokesman for the MinisLer has denied that the mi.aister is committed to removing the unions' monopoly on respondency.

If the Government is not going to promote the spread of enterprise bargaining to the non--unionised sector of the workforce by removing the unions' monopoly on respondency, the alternative is to seek to increase the degree of unionisation

in the workforce.

Such a prospect is horrendous, and fills small employers and their employees - who have so far managed to remain out of the unions' domain - with dread.

Many of these small operations are successful simply because they already operate de facto enterprise agreements: employers and employees agree to ignore the strict letter of the relevant awards, although they are liable to prosecution for

doing so.

Mr Brereton should remove the threat of unionising these workplaces ,immediately by promising to dispose of the union monopoly.

COMMONWEALTH

MELBOURNE 18 June 1993

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