Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Mr Crean's attack on civil liberties



Download PDFDownload PDF

U -9 r-

%

Deputy Leader of the Opposition

Parliament House. Canberra, A.C.T. 2600 Tel. (062) 72 6692/6296/6297

NEWS RELEASE FROM JOHN HOWARD, MP D117/85

MR CREAN’S ATTACK ON CIVIL LIBERTIES The Mudginberri dispute illustrates the jack-booted face of union power. „

Mr Simon Crean has said that the current Northern Territory ’ dispute threatens the "very heart of the trade union movement".

If this is so, then trade union power can only thrive if union bosses stamp on the rights of individual workers - whether union members or not.

In his address to Labor Lawyers Mr Crean conveniently overlooked the fact that the employers and employees at Mudginberri unanimously entered into an agreement about pay and conditions and that in doing so they were acting in

accordance with the Northern Territory Meat Industry award.

According to Mr Crean the "so-called rights of the individual" must bend before "the collective rights of organisations".

Mr Crean’s comments can only be regarded as an attack on the civil liberties of individual workers to play a role in determining their own pay and conditions.

The Hawke Government has acted with its usual weakness in the handling of this industrial dispute.

By refusing to insist that Commonwealth meat inspectors do the work for which they are paid - i.e. inspect meat for export at the Mudginberri abattoir and elsewhere - the Government has effectively lined up with -the unions and the ACTU and against the employer.

Commonwealth Government Centre ChUley Square Sydney, N S W. 2000 Tel (02) 239 1856/3050

../2

2

- »

T h i s d i s p u t e a g a i n d e m o n s t r a t e s t h e s u b s t a n t i a l c o n c e s s i o n the H a w k e G o v e r n m e n t m a d e to t h e t r a d e u n i o n m o v e m e n t w h e n it a b a n d o n e d t h e n o w o r k as d i r e c t e d / n o pay p r o v i s i o n s in th e P u b l i c S e r v i c e A c t .

M o v e o v c r , if it h a d h a d its w a y , t h e H a w k e G o v e r n m e n t w o u l d h a v e a b o l i s h e d S e c t i o n 4 5 D o f th e T r a d e P r a c t i c e s A c t .

T h i s w o u l d h a v e m e a n t t h a t t h e u n i o n s i n v o l v e d in the t o t a l l y u n j u s t i f i e d M u d g i n b e r r i d i s p u t e w o u l d n o t be s u b j e c t to any s a n c t i o n s w h a t s o e v e r .

S e c t i o n 4 5D h a s p r o v e d to b e a p r i c e l e s s a s s e t for the r i g h t s of i n d i v i d u a l s in the f a c e o f u n r e a s o n a b l e u n i o n d e m a n d s .

' It m u s t be r e t a i n e d in t h e T r a d e P r a c t i c e s A c t .

T h e r e a r e v e r y i m p o r t a n t p r i n c i p l e s i n v o l v e d in the o u t c o m e o f t h i s d i s p u t e .

T h e N a t i o n a l F a r m e r s ’ F e d e r a t i o n d e s e r v e s , a n d s h o u l d r e c e i v e , w i d e s u p p o r t in its h a n d l i n g o f t h i s c a s e .

5 A u g u s t 1 9 8 5