27 July 2016Workers called “dog c*nts” and threatened with standover tactics by CFMEU

The CFMEU and its official Bradley Upton are facing Federal Court action following allegations that Mr Upton abused and threatened construction workers on the Gorgon LNG Project who were not members of the union.

In its statement of claim, FWBC alleges as follows:

  • Mr Upton entered the Gorgon Project, located off the coast of Western Australia, on 3 December 2015 and addressed a group of 50 to 60 workers for ten minutes during their morning break. The group of workers included both union members and non-union members.

  • During his address, he said words to the following effect:

    • “The f-cking 90 dog c-nts that resigned from the union the day after we signed the EBA after we got the conditions we got now, this is a f—king union site. If you don’t f-cking like it, f-ck off somewhere else.”

    • “We got you these conditions, we know who you are. We’re going to put your names on the back of toilet doors, we’re going to do standover tactics next year to let everyone know who you f-cking dog c-nts are.”

    • “This is a f-cking union site, we have other union sites starting up next year and if you’re not in the union, you can f-ck off too, you are not welcome.”

  • These statements constituted threats to workers on the site who were not members of the union, implying they would be subject to alienation and abuse on the Gorgon Project.

  • These threats were made with the intent to coerce the workers to join the union.

  • Mr Upton’s abusive and intimidating behaviour and profane language was a contravention of right of entry laws.

FWBC Director Nigel Hadgkiss expressed dismay at the alleged conduct and said such behaviour must be stamped out of the building and construction industry.

“These are serious allegations. No-one would want their sons, daughters, mothers or fathers exposed to these threats and bullying of this nature in any workplace. These sorts of actions should be concerning to all building industry participants,” Mr Hadgkiss said.

“There is no such thing as a ‘union site’. All workers must be free to decide to join or not join a union without facing threats or abuse.”

The matter is listed for a directions hearing on 1 September 2016.

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