For many years, shunters at Flemington were renowned for their militancy and industrial solidarity. The bosses would panic when they discovered that through the shunters' direct action, that there weren't any trains going to Newcastle or Nowra and cavein to the shunters' demands. To check this militancy, management at Flemington, appointed a conservative with PTU career ambitions as senior shunter.He was previously based at Everleigh. This conservative continuously worked to undermine the shunters' militancy by saying such things as "we can't do that", when direct action was being considered. Through this activity and the shunters' constant struggle to throw out this conservative, their militancy was worn down.
The Chief Executive of the SRA has reneged on his promise to appoint cleaners as permanent after one year. It has now been extended to two years. Of course as part of the Govt. and the bosses' privatisation plans, cleaning will be taken over by contractors. However, these cleaners will be retrained in other jobs such as cleaning supervisor and station assistant. The bosses are also approaching workers to write reports on their fellow workers to assist disciplinary action and the sack. Presently also the bosses are providing more overtime, apparently before the new rail maintenance business entity is established.
As part of the Carr Govt. and the SRA bosses' privatisation by stealth strategy, the security guards which are now patrolling the trains are also collecting information about the number of passengers on various rail services for companies interested in running private rail services.
In the first number of "State Rail The Way to Go", Len "the arse hole" Harper, chief executive of the SRA, notorious for his use of obscene and abusive language when addressing a Staff meeting at Waverely Depot, when boss of State Transit, several years ago, again has displayed his arrogance. In his article "A message from the Chief Executive", he threatened to drive off the job, those SRA workers who refuse to go along with the destruction of their conditions, associated with the "preprivatisation" business entities carve-up.
Currently Sth. Melbourne depot trammies are pursuing a campaign to retain conductors on the W-Class trams. The Kennett Govt. intends to install ticket machines in them, although they are structurally unsuited for them. Also the trammies at Sth Melb are planning a campaign to extend the 96 route.