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ABC News Breakfast -

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(generated from captions) decision it did the day after

its general meeting. Chris

Evans speaking to us earlier on

the program. For more on this action, we're joined now by

Warren Truss, federal shadow

minister for infrastructure and

transport. Good morning and

thanks for joining us, Warren

trust. Good morning. The

Government has welcomed this

outcome, this ruling made by

Fair Work Australia at 2am.

What's your response? Well,

100,000 people have had to sit

around waiting for an aeroplane

because the Government sat

around and didn't act when it

could have. They've

acknowledged they had at least

three hours notice. That would

have been plenty of time for

the Government to act.

Instead, it waited until the house was on fire before they

actually decided to do

anything. I think that the

Government has a lot of

questions to ask about why it

sat by and allowed this dispute

to reach the stage that it

did. Well, that's a discussion

that I directly had with Chris

Evans this morning. As you

would have heard just a little

bit then, he said that the

three-hour notice, of course,

was not enough and there wasn't

much more that the Government

could do beforehand. He says

it's false to keep making

reference to the provision

reference to the provision of

ministerial intervention in the

Act, because it hasn't been

used before and also it can

then be challenged in the High

Court. If the Government has

no intention of using it, why

did they put it in the Act?

Does it mean the employers have

nowhere they can go in disputes

of this nature? If the

Government said it wanted more

than three hours, that seems to

be an extraordinary response,

since they acted only about one

hour after Qantas took the

Government. If action they'd signalled to the

Government. If they could do

it in one hour, why couldn't

they do it in three hours

previously? You sheet this all

home to the Government rather

than the parties involved, the

unions in dispute with Qantas

and also Qantas management

themselves. Don't they have

responsibility here as well?

Of course it would have been

far better if the parties could

have resolved these issues

talking about them around the

table. It would have been far

better if there was a good

progress. level of discussion making

progress. It was obvious that

no progress was being made.

Yes, there's been perhaps

100,000 passengers

disadvantaged by this dramatic

action by the company, but there's probably been more than

union that hurt by the actions of the

union over the last several

months and, of course, the

union was saying they were

going to bake Qantas slowly.

It was going to go on for

months and months and months.

There would have been millions

of passengers disadvantaged.

This has been a pretty unhappy

weekend, but I guess the

results would have been worse

if in fact Qantas had done

responsibility you might sheet nothing. What about the

home to Qantas management

itself for making this

extraordinary decision over the

weekend? Well, it is unusual and it probably Government, because no company and it probably surprised the

has been prepared to stand up

to the unions since the Fair

Work Act was introduced. Is

that an action that you like seeing a company taking,

grounding its entire fleet?

No, I don't like to see this

kind of level of action at all.

I think we have to have an

industrial relations system

that enables these sorts of

disputes to be resolved. The

company have been crying for

help now for a long time.

They've been talking to the

Government, they've been

talking to us and telling us

what serious problems they are

facing and that they needed to

have these issues resolved. So

there's been plenty of warning

for the Government to have

acted. Their legislation

enabled them to act, but they

chose not to do it. If your

house is on fire, the Fire

Brigade doesn't wait to be

asked to come in and put the

fire out. A good Government, a

good Fire Brigade, is on the

spot at the time. Hang on a

minute, let's listen to what

Chris Evans had to say to us

this morning. He was saying up

until the death knock on Friday the management had told them

directly no, no, our ambition,

our hope here, is to keep

talking to resolve this

ourselves. Putting yourself in

the position of the Government

and as a coalition Government

that would respect the wishes

of private enterprise, wouldn't

you listen to that and say

okay, they believe they can make progress, they believe

they can negotiate, and on that

basis you wouldn't intervene,

would you? Well, you certainly

there's progress being made in wouldn't intervene while

the talks. It was obvious -

That's what Qantas management was telling Government

directly, Warren trust. What's the reasonable response to

that? Those talks clearly had

broken down. Qantas was also

telling the Government and they

were telling us that this

dispute was hurting the company

and it had to be resolved

quickly. They made it clear

that they would have to

exercise their rights under the

Fair Work Act, just as the

unions were seeking to do in

relation to their relation to their negotiations.

So the Government were warned

that there was likely to be an escalation and Qantas wanted

this resolved quickly. Surely

a prudent Government would have

developed some kind of

contingency plans. They wrote

the Act, they know what was in

it and they would have been

aware of how it could work.

They should have been ready to

act within hours when they were

they given the advice by Qantas that

they intended to take the

action they did. Either way, it would appear that an intervention of some kind would

result in the matter going to a

third party, in the case of a

ministerial intervention, as I

mentioned, that might then end up being challenged in the High

Court, rather than the matter

going to intervention at Fair

Work Australia. In your view,

which would have been a better

forum for this to be decided?

Firstly it would be better if

it could be decided around the

table so that passengers and

the Qantas brand would not have

been damaged in the way that it

has been. But when in fact it

had got to this sort of level,

there was an opportunity for

the Government to intervene.

If the Government is saying

that its powers to intervene

are so constrained that in fact they're not able to be used,

then why are they in the Act?

If there are all of these limitations, they have to fix

that. Surely we want an

industrial relations scene and

legislation designed to resolve

disputes, not to make them worse. Warren trust, good to talk to you this morning.