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Aviation Industry



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STATEMENT BY THE LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION IN THE SENATE, SENATOR R. G. WITHERS, ON THE AVIATION INDUSTRY_________

The Federal Government's inaction over the

airlines' dispute was outrageous, the Leader of the Opposition

in the Senate and Opposition spokesman for Civil Aviation,

Senator R. G. Withers, said today. .

"This Government came to power promising

industrial peace", he said. :■■·.· · .

. "But..now we find ourselves facing industrial

chaos, especially in the airline industry. . .

. . . "Australia is facing the worst industrial unrest

it has experienced in its civil aviation history and yet,

according to the Minister, Mr Jones, the Government is not

going to. do anything about it. .

. "Surely the Government has a responsibility to

keep our airlines, flying.

! "The Government has done nothing to resolve the

three-week old strike by airport radio technicians, which

has dislocated air traffic and left thousands of people stranded.

"The situation was further aggravated yesterday

when ground staff at Melbourne's Tullamarine Airport refused

to refuel aircraft.

. "The strike of radio technicians also extended

today when radio technicians in Canberra walked off the job.

. "What we need from the Government now is more

action and fewer pious expressions."

2.

Senator Withers said the Government's intention

that no action would be taken to end the strike until next

week when the Public Service Board would make another offer

to the Professional Radio Employees Institute was ridiculous

and irresponsible. . ■ ' ■

It proved that the Government was totally

incapable.of handling the situation, he said. .

Senator Withers said .that once the dispute had

been settled an inquiry should be made to determine the

adequacy, of radar equipment at Sydney airport and why it .

failed only a few hours, after the strike began. .

Canberra .

2. October 1973