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News News WA unions talk the walk with graduate students

WA unionists were spreading the word on rights at work at the ‘Big Meet’ Career Day last Tuesday, where over 2,600 graduates, students and job-seekers were testing the water before they start their full-time working lives.

People just starting out on their careers are often vulnerable to bad recruitment practices and being forced to accept worse conditions than other workers. Having a union presence at events such as the ‘Big Meet’ is important for ensuring that new employees learn about the role of unions before they have any problems at work.

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Staff from a number of WA unions discussing working conditions with graduates at the Big Meet Career Day

Organisers and Activists from the Community and Public Sector Union, Finance Sector Union, Independent Education Union, Health Services Union, State School Teachers' Union and UnionsWA spoke to hundreds of people about the role  of unions and rights at work. Graduates were often surprised to learn how unions campaigned for valued working conditions such as maternity leave. Others, often from non-English speaking backgrounds, told of having had bad experiences in the workforce already, and wished they had learned about unions sooner.

Many graduates were keen to know more about unions, and some were even willing to join up that very afternoon.

Interested graduates were also provided with information on employment within the union movement itself. Australian unions employ people with a variety of skills and experience, including IT support; creating multimedia material; database management, planning media strategies, and policy advocacy. The union movement provides opportunities for graduates right across Australia to work in their chosen field.

The ‘Big Meet’ is organised every year by the Australian Association of Graduate Employers in multiple cities across the country.

 
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