National Day of Action across the country


On June 20, over 20,000 people - spearheaded by the building industry unions - marched the streets of Melbourne to protest against the Coalition Federal government's implementation of the ABCC, refusal to protect penalty rates and their inability to prevent wage theft by employers.

ASU Branch Secretary Richard Duffy - part of a strong ASU contingent in Melbourne's march from Trades Hall - said that the Turnbull's war on workers has reached breaking point for many hard-working Australians.

"The massive turnout across Melbourne - and indeed the entire country - again highlights just how out of touch the Federal Liberal government is with working Australians. The Fair Work Commission's announcement earlier this year to slash Sunday penalty rates for retail and hospitality workers was seemingly backed up by the Turnbull government, and a decision to reintroduce the ABCC simply means a cut to wages, conditions and safety for construction workers across the country."

"We stand united with our fellow unions in making sure the Turnbull government knows that we are in for the long fight, ensuring the pay and conditions of Australian workers across all sectors truly reflect the work they undertake."


More info:

Aussie workers rally against penalty rate cuts

Facebook gallery

Vale Richard Lodders


We’re all deeply saddened by the passing of our former colleague Richard Lodders who lost his long battle with cancer on June 18. ‘Zips’ was a member of the ASU (and affiliates) for over 40 years, a staunch unionist who created life-long friends here at the ASU.

Secretary Richard Duffy pays tribute to an exceptional ASU Organiser.

“Lodders was one of those blokes that would take his lunch in to the lunchroom with members and sit and discuss everything from union issues to politics and sports. There wouldn’t be a rural or metro council that he hadn’t helped out at over the years.”

His wicked sense of humour and passion for worker’s rights meant he was also loved by the members he represented.

“Back in 1986 when he was working as an Organiser for the City of Brunswick, there was a strike that lasted four weeks. When it was over members put on a luncheon and gave him a plaque in thanks for all that he had done. He was just that type of guy.”

Our thoughts are with his family, wife Margaret, son Adam and our own Elizabeth.

Rest in peace, mate.


Funeral details:


Monday 26 June - 2.30pm

Charles Crawford & Sons Chapel
25 McKenzie St, Melton

Private Cremation


Industrial action: Latest from Frankston City Council


Frankston City Council have been notified of additional industrial action and work bans as management continue to put forward an unfair EA offer for its hard-working staff.

ASU Branch Executive President Michelle Jackson said Frankston City Council continue to offer staff the lowest pay increase in the metropolitan area of 1.4% or $24 per week (whichever is the greater).

"In response to our claims that CPI - and therefore the rate cap - is expected to rise, Council are now offering a payment of 70% of the rate cap in the 2017/18 financial year. As CPI is supposed to represent the cost of living increase, Council is only offering workers 70% of the cost of living increase which in real terms equates to a pay cut!"

The EBA was put to a vote of all staff and voted down in March. The ASU have continued to hold discussions with Council including conciliation in the Fair Work Commission. Members at Frankston City Council have been taking industrial action since February and we have recently implemented additional industrial action including transferring all external calls and emails to the Mayor & Councillors, writing messages on Council vehicles and bans on:
•    attending or providing training.
•    collection of shopping trolleys.
•    responding to complaints about derelict or abandoned vehicles, unsightly properties and overhanging tree branches.
•    maintenance and repair works on Council assets
•    emptying Blade or returning library books to shelves.

As a result of the agreement being voted down and the industrial action that ASU members have taken, Council has increased their offer to include:
•    A $500 sign on bonus
•    Moving payments 1 July back to 1 April each year (this is worth a minimum of $288 per year)
•    3 days paid leave between Christmas and New Year each year

NB: All of the above are pro-rata for part-time employees

"We expect that Council will put the agreement out to the vote for a second time in July and we will again be urging all of our members and staff to Vote NO."



Think you don’t need a will? Think again…

ASU members and their partners receive a free standard will kit from Maurice Blackburn.

It’s surprising how many Australians don’t have an up-to-date will, or any will at all. If that’s you, and you want some control over what happens to your assets after you’ve gone, now is the time to get a legally binding will in place.

There are several reasons why people often don’t have a will. For many, it simply falls in the too-hard basket. Talking about death is not really a common topic so many people think creating a will is going to be a long and complicated process. Yet in most cases, it’s really simple.

Also, some people mistakenly believe that they don’t own enough to justify a will. But what they forget is that we’re all worth much more dead than we are alive when you factor things like superannuation and life insurance into the equation.

Ultimately, however, probably the biggest reason people don’t have a will is procrastination – it’s on their to-do list, but it never makes it to the top of the pile.

Why you should have a will

The main reasons to create a will include:

•    to appoint someone – an executor – who has the authority to step into your shoes and tend to your affairs when you die
•    to communicate your wishes regarding the distribution of your assets after your death, and
•    to try to avoid disputes that may arise if you don’t create a will.

Many of the disputes we deal with at Maurice Blackburn Lawyers result from people not having a will, or having one that is out of date and doesn’t reflect the deceased’s circumstances at the end of their life.

Sometimes people think they have to have all of their affairs sorted before they can set them down in a will. But provided you’ve got a basic plan around what you want to do, it’s important to get that in writing. Then you’ll have an executor appointed, so you won’t have a fight about who’s going to administer your will, plus you’ll have some instructions in place.

So what happens to your assets if you don't make a will?

You will be considered ‘intestate’ if you pass away without a will. The legal system would then distribute your estate according to a formula, known as an intestacy formula that has been set out in an act of parliament. Basically, your assets will be distributed among those you’ve left behind according to their relationship to you. Often, this starts with a spouse or children.

By not having a will, you essentially lose control of your assets. You’re effectively delegating the decisions about the distribution of your estate to the legal system. Though every state and territory has its own intestacy regime, the basic principles are the same throughout Australia.

Avoid family drama and disagreements

To minimise disagreements among your family members after you're gone, having a will is a really good place to start. Then, at least you’ve expressed what your wishes are, and your survivors – and the legal system – have something to go by.

So protect yourself, your assets and your loved ones by putting drafting your will in the must-do pile, by calling Maurice Blackburn on 1800 810 812 to receive your free will kit.



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