Sun powers workers co-op

Australia's first worker-owned green manufacturing plant celebrated the installation of its first solar hot water system and held a press conference on Monday, 22 April at Kildonan Uniting Care in Coburg Victoria, to discuss this progressive approach to jobs saving and building the new generation of green technologies manufacturing.

Earthworker Solar

Representatives of Earthworker, business partners and trade union officials including Ged Kearney, ACTU president were onsite to witness the unveiling of the solar system on the roof of the Uniting Church facility.

Why are employee-owned businesses better?

Employee-owned firms are more productive and their employees are better off:*

  • Firms that are owned by their employees or where they have a stake in the business through a share ownership plan are 4-5% more productive than comparable companies
  • They are also 25% more likely to survive than comparable companies and the employees are four times less likely to get laid off in a downturn
  • 98% of co-operatives are still trading after their first three years compared to 65% of all business
  • Over a 25% year period employee owned companies have 25% higher job growth
  • Employees at employee-owned firms receive 5-15% more in wages
  • Employee owned businesses do not close for reason of moving to another country

High profile examples of employee-owned firms:

Australian example of a manufacturing firm where jobs were saved because the plant was transferred to employee ownership rather than closing:





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Peter Russell-Clarke
Iconic TV chef and co-ops champion, Peter Russell-Clarke
"...because a lot of profit made from human effort is vanishing out of the local community where it is generated, we are becoming acutely aware that we need to join hands and protect each other by striving together to the benefit of our neighbours as well as our own family. We need to co-operate with each other - Bravo the co-operatives amongst you."

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