Monday, July 10, 2006

Ship Workers Stand Firm Despite Threats

The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) says a group of workers refusing to leave a chemical tanker docked in Hobart have received a letter demanding they return to work. Eighteen crew members aboard the Stolt Australia are facing the sack, with the company planning to re-flag the vessel to the Cayman Islands and hire cheaper foreign labour.
Stolt Australia
The workers say the Federal Government's workplace changes make it easier for employers to off-load their employees. MUA spokesman Warren Smith says the workers are prepared for a long fight. "They received a letter, a threatening letter, that if they didn't continue on with the full operations of the vessel they would be subjected to disciplinary action," he said. "The lads have decided the issue is so big, it's so fundamental to the future of not only their future jobs but the future Australian shipping industry, that they've got to take a stand."

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