Unions March As One In Toowoomba For Labour Day
Release date: 4/05/2015
They’re the cogs in the machine the keep the Toowoomba economy running.
The Chronicle, by Andrew Backhouse, 2 May 2015
Workers' rights and conditions were the main focus of the Labour Day March in Toowoomba on Saturday.
Diverse unions representing workers from truck drivers, to teachers and electricians joined together in solidarity in a walk across the city.
Shane Brunker from the Construction Forestry Mining Energy Union of Queensland said there was a good roll-up considering the wet weather on Friday.
He said it was a celebration of past and present victories of the union movement.
"For example the stage 3 expansion of Acland is a big issue for us.
"A lot of money will go out of the Toowoomba economy if that doesn't get approved."
Zeb Sugden from the Queensland Teachers Union said the day was a celebration for workers and the contribution they make to society.
"Whether you're a teacher or a transport worker, it's about ensuring there are minimum wages and safety conditions."
He said workload continued to be an issue for teachers.
"Teachers go above and beyond."
Brendan Bogle from the Transport Workers Union said Toowoomba residents wanted to be protected in their workplaces.
"Unions are still relevant, they haven't died," he said.
"When the time comes for changes such as the penalty rates that are coming through at the moment, it's the unions that stand up."
He said the TWU was mostly focused on ensuring safety for its members, with 332 truck drivers dying on the road last year.
He said Toowoomba was an important hub of the Queensland economy.
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