A workplace campaign by LHMU Western Australia that provided 2,000 temporary Government education support staff with permanent jobs and successfully recruited 300 new delegates for the union was one of the major winners of the annual ACTU awards announced this week.

Sharan Burrow, ACTU President, congratulated winners and finalists of the ACTU Awards on their successful year of organising, campaigning and recruiting undertaken throughout the year at the Whitlam Lecture held in Melbourne on Tuesday night.

Sharan was joined by former Prime Minister Gough Whitlam to congratulate the
winners and finalists – capping a memorable night for the more than 150 people
present at the union movement’s big night.

This year fourteen awards were handed out in the seven different

Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Award

Winner: Les Tobler, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Liasion
Union: CFMEU – New South Wales
For: Increasing the
employment and involvement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in the
building industry and the CFMEU through the ‘Job Ready Koori

Workplace Delegate Of The Year

Winner: Rosemary Church
Union: Victorian Telecommunications & Services Branch CEPU
Employer: Australian Communications
For: Increasing Union Membership by 75% in a workplace of entirely casual staff. This created a strong basis for a good collective EBA which was successful in providing a three year agreement and an increased focus on converting casuals to permanents.

Finalist: Australia Post Underwood Mail Centre Union Delegates –
(Amanda Robertson, Steve Douglas, Richard De Turt, Ian Barker, Donna Perkins,
Terry Hunter, Leon Richardson)
Union: CEPU – Communications Division – Queensland

Employer: Australia Post,
Underwood Mail Centre
For: A great EBA campaign that grew membership
by 20% and re-energised and revitalized the union in that workplace.

Organiser Of The Year

Winner: CPSU Customs Organising Team – (Arian McVeigh, Liz Temple,
Tony Hall, Peter Vesely, Richard Jonsson, Sue Jackel, Glen Hyde, Rupert
Union: Community & Public Sector Union – Border protection
and International Affairs Division
For: Customs Campaign
In 2003
the CPSU assembled a team of organizers with objective of re-building the union
in customs. Through systematic workplace mapping, organising, activism,
applying industrial and public pressure and smart negotiating tactics they grew
the union by 600 members and achieved one of the best bargaining results in
customs history.

Finalist: Agnes Stanislaus-Large
Union: Australia Nursing
Federation – Tasmanian Branch
For: Her work in Tasmania where she has
increased membership in her organising area by 40%.

Finalist: Jenny Nielsen
Union: ASU – Central & Southern
Qld Branch
For: Queensland Diagnostic Imaging EBA Campaign which
through the systematic involvement of members increased union membership by a

Best Media Quote By A Union Leader

Winner: Paddy Crumlin, National Secretary
Union: Maritime
Union of Australia
Quote: [John Howard] ‘didn’t know what
cabotage was when we met him as PM, and still probably doesn’t, unless
George Bush has told him. This probably means someone has to tell George Bush
as well, I suppose”

Best Workplace Campaign

Winner: LHMU West Australia
For: Government Education
Support Workers – Organising, Growing, Winning Campaign. The LHMU Western
Australian campaign for Government Education Support Workers was an overwhelming
success. Doubling union density and achieving a collective union agreement
which delivered significant pay rises and gave 2,000 temporary staff permanent
employment. The campaign also recruited 300 new delegates for the union.

Finalist: Finance Sector Union of Australia – Queensland Banking and
Insurance Section
For: Their campaign to save the job of a retrenched
Bank of Queensland worker Rainey. This campaign successfully built the
connection between one individual’s issue and the need for collective
union organisation and support to get a just result. Rainey’s job was
saved and the union was grown and strengthened.

Finalist: CFMEU – Construction Division
For: Maintaining
and building a workplace organisation against an $80 million onslaught from the
Howard Government. While the public debate raged about the building Industry
Royal Commission (including one of the best resourced and calculated media
campaigns a government has ever run against a union) in the workplace and on the
ground the CFMEU maintained and strengthened their workplace organisation.

Jennie George Award

Winner: AMWU – National Women’s Committee
Obtaining recognition within the AMWU that the organising of and active
participation of women is critical to the future of the union.

Best Communications Campaign Of The Year

Winner: Australian Union Movement for the James Hardie
This year the award for best communication campaign goes to not a
single union but the whole of the trade union movement and in particular unions
in NSW and Victoria for their combined efforts on the campaign to achieve
justice for Australian victims of James Hardie’s asbestos products.

Finalist: Australian Workers’Union
For: Esso Bass
Strait – 14-day rosters campaign. This campaign over Esso’s decision to
unilaterally change rosters for off shore oil workers in Victoria, skilfully
combined smart legal/industrial strategy, effective, innovative and modern
communications and media work. The campaign to prevent Esso introducing rosters
which would significantly disrupt the family lives of off-shore workers tapped
into a strong community concern about parenting – and the role of fathers. The
union won a significant victory and maintained family friendly roster