ASU branch accounts now available

The financial statements for the year ended 30 June 2008 of the ASU Victorian Private Sector Branch are now available.

You can download the statements from here.

State of the Union February 2007

Our Future - Worth Fighting For


This edition of State of the Union comes to you at a time when the Howard Government’s IR laws are still reverberating through the community.  Throughout 2006 working people stood up to the Howard government and big business through the ‘Your Rights at Work Campaign’ and showed that there is strength in unity.

2007 will be a critical year for working families with a federal election most likely in the second half of the year.  There is no doubt that industrial relations will feature as a major election issue this time around.

The ASU will be campaigning in the lead up to the federal election to secure workplace laws that restore the rights of working families.

At the ASU we believe every working Australian should have the right to:

  1. A decent safety net of pay and conditions;

  2. Protection from unfair treatment and dismissal;

  3. Union membership and representation;

  4. A fair collective bargaining system;

  5. An Independent Umpire to hear and settle disputes.

Our children should not inherit lower wages and conditions and unsafe working conditions.  Join the campaign – visit and follow the links to the Your Rights at Work page.


Ingrid Stitt,
Branch Secretary

State of the Union December 2006


We are now in the thick of the Your  Rights at Work Campaign and less than 12 months out from a federal election.

Unions in Australia are more determined than ever to campaign to see the repeal of these laws – laws that have removed basic rights from our workplaces.  Laws that if left un-challenged will fundamentally change the Australian ‘fair go’ for ever.

November 30 was the fourth mass mobilisation of working people across the country to protest the federal government’s industrial relations nightmare that is ‘Workchoices’.

I was enormously proud to be part of the ASU delegation at the recent MCG national day of protest.  ASU members were out in force together with tens of thousands of Victorian workers and their families.

As well as mass mobilisations the union campaign will continue to raise awareness in our communities through TV advertising.  We will also continue to tell the stories of working people who are experiencing hardship under the new laws.  It is very important that we are not deterred from telling these peoples’ stories.

Unions nationally have resourced Your Rights at Work Community Campaign Coordinators in 22 marginal seats across the country.  These Community Campaigners will work at the grass roots level in communities to campaign against the federal government’s IR laws in the lead up to the next federal election.

Our union will also be contacting every ASU member who lives in a marginal seat to discuss the IR laws.

In late October the ACTU Congress met in Melbourne and debated and endorsed a new Industrial Relation Policy for the future.  This edition of Unite details the ACTU policy and I urge you to make yourself familiar with it.  Unlike the low wage, low skill bleak vision our federal government has for our workplaces, the union plan is about investing in our nation, skilling our workforce, and restoring rights to
working people.

The union plan will restore the right to be represented by a union and the right to collectively bargain if the majority of the workforce support this.

The union plan restores a proper safety net for wages and conditions and will restore the powers of an independent umpire to settle disputes.

Congratulations to each and every ASU member who has stood up to be counted as part of the Your Rights at Work Campaign.  We look forward to the campaign ahead.

Spirit of giving

In this issue of Unite we feature a number of articles focussing on social justice around the globe.  Christmas is a good time to reflect on those less fortunate than ourselves and to think about ways in which we can contribute to a more just world.


Ingrid Stitt

Branch secretary

State of the Union July 2006


After just four months of the federal government’s radical industrial relations changes many working Australians have already felt the effects of the harsh new laws.

Almost daily there are more stories emerging of dismissals, unfair individual contracts that remove Award conditions.  A number of Australian companies have wasted no time in taking advantage of.

This is the true picture behind John Howard’s industrial agenda. The new legislation was passed by the Government controlled Senate in March this year and we are already seeing large numbers of hard working Australians suffering a cut in their take home pay and the loss of important working conditions.

Penalty rates, shift allowances, leave loading, rest breaks and public holidays are all getting the chop as employers use the new IR laws to axe award entitlements."

Sometimes it can be hard to separate the media hype from the facts.  This edition of Unite looks at the pressures facing working families under the federal government’s new laws and what the union movement across Australia is doing to fight back.

Your Rights at Work – Worth Fighting For!

With these laws in place it is even more important then ever that people belong to a union.
Union workplaces deliver better pay and stronger conditions for workers.  Collective bargaining has set standards for workers across the economy for over 100 years.

If attempts are made to change your pay and conditions you need to be in a strong union.
Belonging to a union and working together with your fellow work mates is the best way to ensure you and your family are better off.


Ingrid Stitt
Branch secretary

State of the Union December 2005


November 15th 2005 saw Australians in unprecedented numbers protest against the Howard Government’s workplace laws.

Despite the growing concern in the community the government has pressed ahead with the controversial ‘WorkChoices’ legislation.

A very limited Senate inquiry has been held that highlighted just how bleak the government’s policies will be for working Australians. The government has chosen to ignore the concerns of unions, churches, community organizations, legal advocates, academics, economists and the thousands of ordinary working people who made submissions to the inquiry.

The government instead has used its majority in the Senate to pass harsh, unpopular laws that will see many basic rights at work stripped away.

This edition of Unite details the new laws and how they can affect you.  We now know the detail of the Howard Government’s plans. Under WorkChoices we will see:

  • The erosion of the value of minimum Award wages;

  • The slashing of Award conditions through a government appointed ‘Task-force’

  • Individual contracts that will undercut the Award safety net;

  • Laws that will make it harder to bargain as a union, and

  • Laws that will make it easier to sack people unfairly.

This is not the future that we want for our children.  Working Australians and their families deserve a fair go at work.

That’s why the ASU is committed to campaigning to ultimately overturn these laws. Now more than ever it will be critical that you:

  • Stick together in the workplace;

  • Support your union, and

  • Get involved in the ‘Your Rights at Work’ campaign

The new laws will be stacked against working people BUT by joining together in our work- places, in our union and in our communities we can protect our rights at work.

I look forward to working with every ASU member to this end.


Ingrid Stitt

Branch Secretary