Just as Kevin Rudd finished wiping the egg off his face after revelations over his wife’s treatment of her employees. The usual suspects provide us with more evidence of their hatred of small business, their ignorance and their trash-anybody-to-get-into-power approach.
On Wednesday during question time, Ms Gillard, the Opposition's industrial relations spokeswoman, repeatedly waved a copy of the AWAs given to staff at the Lilac City Motor Inn at John Howard. "Mr Howard would be proud of this effort," Ms Gillard said. "It means that a worker can be paid the minimum wage, $13.47 an hour, and that's it. No penalty rates. No overtime. No rest breaks. No shift allowance. No leave loading. No public holiday pay. "It goes on and on: $13.47 an hour and you lose every condition that workers have historically relied on in this industry as part of their pay packet," Ms Gillard added.She wasn’t waving copies of anything in Kevin Rudd’s face over this was she? No, no wasn’t waving anything at Greg Combet and the rest of unions over Kelly Hoare either. You see some battlers are less equal than other battlers. The people Gillard was carrying on about aren’t millionaires, they aren’t running 170 million dollar companies or something, not that millionaires are fair game or anything.
JOANN Doolan has been to hell and back since the motel she owns and operates with her husband, Don, was catapulted into the IR debate this week. Since Deputy Opposition Leader Julia Gillard, drawing on a media report, accused them of slashing staff pay and conditions when they introduced Australian Workplace Agreements, the family has been inundated with hate mail and abusive phone calls. But the Doolans, who bought the motel in 2005, say they pay all of their staff more than the minimum wage and have a good relationship with them.Don’t worry about facts or ruining other peoples lives, they are baying for Howard’s blood, they’re doing well in the polls, the public is buying their crap and God help anyone (battler or not) who gets in the way. Incidentally, when the Doolans bought the business there were 6 employees, now there are 12 or more, but that’s obviously a bad thing, go figure.
The award for a grade-one hospitality services employee is $13.91 an hour, or $14.57 for a grade-two employee. Nerida Corby, 32, has worked for the Doolans as a receptionist, waitress and general handywoman for the past three months. The mother of two children under five said the Doolans were excellent employers - flexible and considerate. She told The Australian that she earned well above the $13.91 an hour minimum. "My pay is perfectly reasonable for what I do," Ms Corby said.
"I am happy to be working here. They are great, they are very nice people. They are just a young family trying to run a business." In the media maelstrom, the Doolans were accused of instructing staff not to wear perfume or aftershave, nor to rub their nose or even "pull at a slipping bra strap". But Ms Doolan said she was disturbed by the way she had been depicted - and the hate mail that followed.
The Doolans have two boys, aged four and seven, and have worked hard to build the motel into a successful business. Mrs Doolan was forced to talk to her sons' primary school to ensure that they were not bullied as a result of all the attention. Ms Corby said staff had been upset and protective of the Doolans, concerned at the distress the controversy was causing them. "It is not just them affected," she said. "If they don't get the business we don't get the jobs."
Employment and Workplace Relations Minister Joe Hockey said yesterday the ALP should have done more to check its facts before airing the allegations.