Thursday, December 24, 2009

A not-so-merry Christmas for Ark Tribe

Ark Tribe attended his last court hearing for 2009 on Friday Dec 18th. His extraordinary saga continues next year when he is required to attend the Magistrates Court on the 15th, 16th, and 18th of June to defend his right to remain silent following a workplace safety meeting.

In the mean time, the construction site where Ark’s odyssey commenced is now a finished, occupied business, with people wandering in and out going about their daily lives probably getting excited over the prospects of Christmas holidays and Christmas dinner with their family and friends.

The construction company that built the property, John Hindmarsh, is winding down for the Christmas period which will allow their workers a well earned rest before 2010 brings yet another year of balancing on the precarious edge between profit and safety through unrealistic scheduling.

The police who were called onto the site by over-enthusiastic management are hopefully busy doing what they are really paid for - chasing and protecting the public from crooks and villains and not running around sites wasting taxpayers’ money and time chasing union officials for spurious reasons.

The Federal Government officials in the form of the Australian Building Construction Commission were more interested in charging the CFMEU and its officials with breaches of anything they could conjure up instead of concerning themselves with the OHS&W issues facing workers on site or investigating why John Hindmarsh locked out all the workers from a site on the Saturday following a safety meeting on the Friday. We are still waiting to hear of any charges being laid against John Hindmarsh on this one.

Don’t hold your breath.

It could be assumed that all those involved in bringing about the charges that would have Ark Tribe jailed for 6 months, if found guilty, are looking forward to a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. They probably think they deserve it because they have had a hard year and are now looking forward to the break.

What a pity Ark Tribe couldn’t be afforded the same sentiment by those hounding him. After enduring delay after delay through the courts, he now has to wait another six months before his case is heard.

Not a Merry Christmas for Ark or his family with six months jail hanging over his head. Even with the greatest of support, a jail sentence hanging over one’s head cannot be discarded, it is always in the back of the mind all day every day including Christmas Day.

We can only hope all those who have supported Ark will continue doing so and have a really great Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

For all the others, who cares?

Click here to see a Christmas message to Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard from supporters of Ark Tribe.

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