Defend the Right to Organise!

Aerial photograph of a portion of the Mater He...
Aerial photograph of the site of Qld Children’s Hospital Dispute. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Bob Carnegie, community protest organiser in the Queensland Children’s
Hospital dispute in Brisbane, is being sued on 53 separate counts by the
main contractor, Abigroup.

Abigroup is seeking damages on the grounds that Bob defied a court order which they got, instructing him to stay away from the community protest.

The Queensland government joined AbiGroup’s legal action outlawing the community protest earlier in the dispute.

Qld Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie says “the government has joined principal contractor Abigroup in Fair Work Australia (FWA) hearings against “the unlawful conduct” of unions at the South Brisbane site.”

A defence campaign, the Trade Union Defence Committee, has been set up
in Brisbane, and socialists will be working to spread the campaign
across Australia and internationally.

Bob says: “It’s an act of intimidation by Abigroup and their law firm to
try to bring people to heel by the threat of legal action. We’ll
certainly be fighting this one”.

The first court hearing is on 17 October, but legal advice is that the
case will run for several months. The charges could lead to fines of up
to $400,000, and maybe a jail sentence.

As part of the dispute settlement, Abigroup agreed to drop legal
proceedings against a number of QCH workers. We now need a big campaign
to force Abigroup to drop its vindictive action against Bob Carnegie.

It is an attempt to intimidate not only an individual, but every
organiser in every workers’ battle in future.

Martin Thomas
Workers Liberty

The Trade Union Defence Committee is also organising a benefit to raise funds for the workers who lost nine weeks’ pay in the dispute. It will be on Saturday 27 October, from 7pm at the Serbian Hall, 243-7 Vulture St, South Brisbane.

Reference — After the Waterfront – the workers are quiet

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