Sacked workers step up pay fight
THE T-shirt Paul Windler wore on Friday stated exactly what the sacked Grafton abattoir workers are seeking in the fight for their unpaid entitlements - victory.
That fight stepped up a notch on Friday when the campaign went state-wide, then national, all in the space of an hour.
Mr Windler phoned high-profile 2UE radio announcer Steve Price, whose show networks across NSW, to talk about the plight of the sacked abattoir workers.
According to Mr Windler, he got about 10-minutes air-time with Mr Price, discussing the plight of the sacked workers and the fact that his former employer had not paid the workers their entitlements.
“I've been trying to get on to Steve's show for about a month now. I finally got on this morning and Steve seemed to take a real interest,” he said.
“Steve said he was going to contact Cansdell (NSW Member for Clarence Steve Cansdell) and Saffin's office (Federal Member for Page Janelle Saffin) because The Daily Examiner is the only one that has taken a real interest in this.”
Mr Windler said that about five minutes after he hung up the phone, Mr Price's producer rang back to tell him that Federal Liberal Member Bronwyn Bishop wanted to make contact.
He said Mrs Bishop had listened to the program and wanted to assist the sacked workers in their pursuit of justice. Shortly after, Mr Windler had a 20-minute phone call with Mrs Bishop.
“She wanted to know everything in great detail,” he said.
“I feel really good that someone else has been brave enough to enquire about the structure of Tempus Holdings, the sackings that took place, and the entitlements that are owed.
“Unfortunately, this has come from outside my local area and from another political party.”
Mr Windler said that when he was sacked, it was made clear by two senior staff at the Grafton abattoir that he was dismissed for injuring himself at work.
“I was told directly by two people that my dismissal was WorkCover related,” he said.
“I never saw this coming because we were told that changing from Tempus Holdings to Paul Allen Contracting Services was just a technicality.”
In a huge twist, it now appears Tempus Holdings director Michael Considine is not being represented by Casino-based solicitor Frank Hannigan.
Antony Barac is a solicitor with the Northern Rivers Community Legal Centre which is working with the sacked abattoir workers.
Mr Barac said on Friday that Frank Hannigan's office had confirmed it was not representing Michael Considine.
“Hannigan's has received no instructions from Tempus Holdings, of which Michael Considine is a director,” Mr Barac said.
“So, it appears that Tempus Holdings is not currently a client of Hannigan.”
Mr Barac said Mr Hannigan's office confirmed it was representing the Grafton abattoir's newest labour-hire company, Paul Allen Contracting.