Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Radical Youth Relaunch Youth Rates Campaign.

Radical youth kicked off their youth rates campaign for the year with an 18 square meter banner and some street theatre at May Day in Auckland. Spokes person for Radical Youth said "its time for business owners and the labour party to give us equal pay for equal work" and that "when youth get discriminated against on a daily basis we have to stand up and fight back". This is one of the first events of the year in a campaign by groups such as Radical Youth the Youth Union Movement and Young Labour to force Labour to pass Sue Bradfords bill to get rid of youth rates.

The publicity stunt involved a boss in a flash suit dragging three young workers around yelling at the public asking "where's your children? give me your children" apparently searching for people under the age of 18 so he could pay them youth rates or less. It became apparent after a while that the boss was actually working for Pack and Save and was paying 15 year olds $5.70 an hour to stack shelves and work on checkouts. The boss pulled the workers through throngs of people choking them and yelling at them to move faster saying "I'm not paying you to muck round, work harder, faster". The workers eventually rose up against the boss cutting the leash the boss was holding onto and joining a protest against youth rates.

May Day was a lively affair with Radical Youth, Unite, EPMU and Solidarity flying dozens of flags as well as the occasional black or pirate flag. Numbers were average for May Day with about two hundred or so people present - with a large number of them union officials, delegates and activists. The lively and loud chants on the march were split between those about youth rates led by radical youth and militant union chants led by solidarity activists. One of the highlights of the event was the large number of locked out Amcor workers present at the rally as well as some of the locked out workers from last years Progressive Enterprises dispute. The speakers were not particularly noteworthy and numbers dwindled quickly once the march had finished.

1 comment:

George said...