The other story on inequality: public versus private wealth

The narrative of inequality is largely framed as an ever larger gap between the top and bottom levels of income and wealth hierarchies and a greatly reduced middle level inhibiting opportunity for upward social and economic mobility or even simply maintenance of an adequate standard of living. Disturbing new research shows that in Australia, two…

Welfare system ‘normalises’ precarious work

The Australian trade union movement is reinvigorating its fight against insecure jobs. This is one of the most important battles in these times of burgeoning inequality. The ACTU’s new documents to back up its fight Australia’s insecure work crisis: Fixing it for the future and Jobs You Can Count On are well researched and broad in scope. Its proposals cover strengthening…

Making a casual worker permanent – can it be done?

Last Wednesday, ACTU secretary, Sally McManus gave a speech at the National Press Club on increasing the minimum wage and improving job security. I was asked by the ABC NSW Statewide Drive program with Fiona Wyllie, to respond which I did on the day. Of course, I support any efforts to promote employment security. Further…

The ‘glass floor’: an old and new driver of inequality

The Age’s Good Weekend magazine almost always offers interesting longer articles for relaxed weekend enjoyment. But in a recent edition (3 February 2018) there was a disturbing aspect to the publication. The front cover of the magazine highlighted the feature story about property developer Michael Buxton and his art collection with the the tropes: MAKE…