Weary workers' withheld wages worry wealth-holders. (Unsplash) Weary workers’ withheld wages worry wealth-holders. (Unsplash)

Workers involved in government excavation works have dropped tools following a refusal to pay fair wages triggering a bid to unionise being widely circulated.

After it was revealed that the government paid foreign workers to do the same work as locals, Pavian workers organised to demand “fair pay for a fair day’s work”.

These calls were refused by the government who said that the benefit of a “roof over your head” was more than enough.

With workers moving to form unions, there are also calls for increased safety and union recognition.

Union organisers’ strike call

Organisers for the Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Engineering Union called for the government to reverse its position.

“It’s absolutely shameful behaviour”, said paronaayne, secretary of the CFMMEU.

“Pavia was built on the backs of the unpaid labour of Pavian citizens.”

“Now we are being told that living like trolls in a cave is payment while they collect all of the gold and diamonds from the mineshafts we dig.”

“Workers are toiling in unsafe conditions. One worker told me he was directed to dig above an open lava pit without any safety equipment. Another suffered severe burns and almost died when lava flowed freely from the walls.”

“We are calling on all Pavian workers to put down their tools, join the CFMMEU and block entrance to all workplaces until we have fair and safe conditions for all workers.”

“Strike action is the only course open to us to make the dukes understand that this dispute will continue for as long as it takes, until we get a negotiated settlement.”

Government “committed” to resolution

The Duke of Braemar, Cissonius, says the government is open to make offers to all workers.

“We remain committed to resolving the situation with our tireless workers”, he said.

“We will continue discussions between the government and CFMMEU to reach a fair solution that benefits all workers”.

“We will not rule out fair wages, nor has the government done anything with the intent to wrong our workers.”

“We are one Pavia and are determined to see our town built quickly, safely and under strong working conditions”.

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