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The inconsistency is overwhelming!

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The Hawke Government's determination to push ahead with the Accord Mark VI outside the central wage fixing system smacks of absolute hypocrisy.

The special treatment Bob Hawke is giving his "mates" from the ACTU affiliated Waterside Workers' Federation contrasts sharply with the treatment the Prime Minister dished up to the non-affiliated Australian Federation of Airline Pilots only

two years ago.

In 1989, the Prime Minister saw it as perfectly appropriate to bring in the RAAF to help the airlines crush the pilots after they'd threatened to go outside the centralised wage fixing system with a claim for a 30 per cent increase in wages.

Mr Hawke told us such a claim would wreck the wage system, prompt a wage break-out, and lead to double digit inflation.

He castigated the pilots for NOT accepting the independent judgement handed down by the Industrial Relations Commission.

Today, though, it is Bob Hawke and Paul Keating who are refusing to accept the umpire's decision.

When the waterfront unions, with the backing of the ACTU, threatened to scuttle the reform process on the docks unless they got an immediate flat $12 a week wage rise the Hawke Government didn't even threaten them with a feather!

Instead, Mr Hawke offered the waterfront unions a peace package that features:

a flat $12 a week from May 16

a further 4 per cent wage rise from July on completion of enterprise agreements and employee reclassifications

and an additional unspecified increase in wages next year.

The inconsistency is overwhelming!



What's the major difference between the pilots and the waterside workers? The Waterside Workers' Federation is affiliated with the ACTU and the Pilots Federation was NOT!

The waterside workers are part of the Hawke Government's industrial relations "club" and the pilots were NOT.

The Government's handling of the ACTU's threat to bring the desperately needed waterfront reform to a standstill highlights yet again how the Hawke Government is prepared to bend over backwards to look after its "mates".

Come on, Mr Hawke: If it's good enough for the goose, why isn't it good enough for the gander!

1 May 1991 Sydney

Contact: David Turnbull (06) 2774277 D56/91






"if the pilots refuse to abide by their obligation within the centralised (wages) system then the Government would support any move for the- cancellation or suspension of

existing pilots' awards or agreements. That would, of course, cancel all tho rights and all the protections that are provided by the centralised system. If the pilots chose to go outside the system, then this Government will

fully support any action by the airlines to bring the dispute to an early end. The matter is quite simple and straightforward. Either the pilots in this country accept the obligations of the award system that entitles

them to their rights or they forfeit those rights.■

(Hawke quoted in The Australian)

"When someone wants a 29 per cent increase, which is simply just a pay grab, for that to go through the economy would boost our inflation rate into high double digits...that just cannot

be tolerated.We cannot have the national wage system being torn around by a group of employees,"

(Keating quoted in The Canberra Times)

"For that [a 30% wage rise for pilots] to go through the economy would lift our inflation rate into high double digits, probably with a 2 in front...that sort of gross behaviour cannot be tolerated. It's as simple as that, what government, what economic system, can tolerate


(Keating quoted in The Australian)

"The Federal Government yesterday condemned the pilots' action as 'irresponsible and unnecessary' and plans to support any moves by the airlines to have the pilots' awards


The Prime Minister is particularly angry because of the potential for wage breakouts that a successful claim by the pilots would trigger,"

(The Sydney Morning Herald)








"We may have to ask the Commission as whether it's appropriate that they [the pilots] can have any status at all within a system which they have deliberately said to go to hell."

(Hawke quoted in The Sydney Morning Herald)

"If they want war then there will be war and we won't be losing it...If it means shutting down the system for x number of weeks then it will be shut down."

(Hawke quoted in The Sydney Morning Herald)

"No one regrets more than myself their [the pilots] decision to pull out, but they will not win. Australia will win from this, an even if it means an enormous amount of hardship for a

considerable period of time, that is a price that I believe Australia is prepared to pay and must be prepared to pay."

(Hawke, AM)

"The Treasurer, Mr Keating, said international airlines flying between Australian capitals could be used to pick up domestic passengers. He reaffirmed that the Government could not

allow a significant group of employees to break out of the wage system."

(The Age)

"if I can't protect Australia against a small group who would destroy the Australian wage system and destroy the Australian economy, then I wouldn't deserve to be Prime Minister. I must protect the interests of Australia.

That# s what I 'm about."

(Hawke, AM)

"...we're going to rush around having national summits, Premiers' conferences, special mediators and these people are getting $80,000 a year for eight hours flying. I mean, you must be joking."

(Hawke, 7*30 Report)

"The AFAP [Australian Federation of Air Pilots] has consistently refused to accept that position which was laid down by the independent umpire, by the Industrial Relations Commission

and, in that sense, there is no industrial dispute."

(Hawke, AM)