CCIQ urges appropriate State Government response to union inquiry
The final report of the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption, which revealed widespread allegations of misconduct across Australia and Queensland, warrants an urgent response from the State Government.
Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) Director of Advocacy Nick Behrens said the commission had uncovered serious issues in the trade union movement in Queensland that warranted detailed consideration and action from the State Government.
“Queenslanders deserve to operate in an environment where employers and employees can go about their business and daily work free from illegal activity, interference, intimidation and coercion from unions,” he said.
“Members of unions and employers deserve to know that the conduct of our state unions is of the highest order. Appropriate action must be taken to ensure that everybody plays by the rules and does the right thing.”
Mr Behrens said CCIQ had the greatest respect for the trade union movement in Queensland, but for the State Government to ignore the damning evidence of the commission would be wrong.
“The absolute majority of individuals operating on behalf of unions in Queensland do so with employee interests at heart and within the confines of acceptable and high practices,” he said.
“But that does not mean that we simply sweep under the carpet the wrongdoing that has been clearly identified.
“To not respond to the commission’s final report the State Government may find itself on the wrong side of history.
“The call for the government to respond to the commission is even more relevant as the final report of the Review of the Industrial Relations Framework in Queensland has been provided to the newly-appointed Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations Grace Grace for consideration.”
Mr Behrens said as there were already accusations that the State Government was beholden to the Queensland union movement, responding appropriately to the commission would clear away uncertainty and be in everyone’s best interests.
He said Acts passed by the Palaszczuk Government this year had clearly served the interests of Queensland unions, including the following:
“There are 79 recommendations from the Royal Commission covering nine broad areas that warrant a serious response,” he said.
“The ball is unquestionably in the court of the Palaszczuk Government to now respond.”