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Earthquake kills at least 1000 Afghans; Unvaccinated Victorian teachers free for school return; Bigger fines for illegal NSW strikes; NSW has 9203 new virus cases, 26 deaths; Victoria reports 7461 new virus cases, nine deaths


The New South Wales Government is attempting to fend off another wave of protests by ramping up fines for illegal strikes.

Teachers and nurses are planning to walk off the job next week, in an ongoing dispute with the state government over pay and conditions.

In response, the government today flagged imposing hefty fines for unions striking in defiance of industrial relations laws.

It is now planning fines of up to $55,000 for the first day of any industrial action and $27,500 for each day after that.

Union leaders have condemned the move by Premier Dominic Perrottet an Treasurer Matt Kean.

“Instead of blaming unions for industrial action, Mr Perrottet needs to look at the man in the mirror,” said Mark Morey, Secretary of Unions NSW.

“The current action taking place across NSW schools, hospitals and transport is solely attributable to Perrottet, Kean and their policy of cutting the living standards of nurses, teachers, police and other public sector workers.”

“Perrottet is the first premier in living memory to deliberately cut the pay of nurses, teachers, police and other public sector workers.

“This is a badge of shame that he can’t ignore.”

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