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Monday, 2 May 2016
Page: 4093

Mr HUTCHINSON (Lyons) (11:18): I seek leave to make an additional contribution.

Ms Hall: As the government can only find one person that has any concern about this motion, I will grant him leave. He can speak for the 90 members of the government who cannot get themselves up here to oppose this motion. We can only assume that they are giving tacit support—

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Mrs Wicks ): Leave is granted. I call the member for Lyons.

Mr HUTCHINSON: I thank the member for Shortland for her generosity. It just gives me an opportunity—

Opposition members interjecting

Mr HUTCHINSON: because the member for Bendigo did not actually outline the motion. I will go through the motion that is before the House today. It notes that the government is attacking on the pay, rights and conditions of workers. These things, as I mentioned in my first contribution, are not matters for the government. These are matters for the independent Fair Work Commission, set up by those opposite. It was very interesting to hear the Leader of the Opposition on, I think, 3AW—I do not listen to 3AW very often. There he was, proudly saying: 'What if the Fair Work Commission says there is a case to make to see that penalty rates are changed? Oh yes, we'll abide by those decisions.' They will abide by those decisions! Those opposite say one thing but they do another thing.

What is this attack on employers? I pose the question: who is standing for the employers in the electorate of Bendigo? Thanks to the foreign minister, who brought 80 heads of mission to Tasmania for three days last week to have a look at our educational institutions, our businesses, the tourism sector and our shipbuilding capacity, we had great pleasure on Saturday to have lunch at Josef Chromy's winery, which is right on the boundary between the electorates of Bass and Lyons. You can see the vineyards, quite appropriately, located in the electorate of Lyons, but we were in the venue itself, which happens to be located in the member for Bass's electorate.

Ms Hall interjecting

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! The member for Shortland will resume her seat. The member for Lyons, please resume your seat. I call the member for Shortland.

Ms Hall: Sorry, Madam Deputy Speaker, for being so exuberant in my need to raise a point of order. The point of order is that this is not about vineyards. This is about workplace relations and the government's attack on workers.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The motion is a very broad-ranging motion. There is no point of order. I call the member for Lyons.

Mr HUTCHINSON: Thank you, Deputy Speaker. I was just going to reference Mr Josef Chromy. Mr Josef Chromy was born in the former Czechoslovakia, which at the time was occupied by Nazi Germany and then he had Soviet Russia—celebrated, no doubt, by the member for Bendigo—coming in to occupy his country after the Second World War. Josef Chromy managed to escape what was Czechoslovakia and made his way to the UK. He came to Tasmania and he has been an absolute success story. At one stage, when he owned Blue Ribbon Meat Products in Tasmania, he was the largest private employer in Tasmania. He was a migrant from troubled central Europe, and he is somebody who I look up to. Why would I not? This is the Australian story and we should celebrate these people, these entrepreneurs who have taken risks. He came to Australia with not a cent in his pocket and he is a very wealthy man now. He has employed thousands and thousands of Tasmanians. We enjoyed the wonderful food and hospitality and the great service that was provided at Josef Chromy's restaurant.

Ms Hall: Madam Deputy Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I have looked at the motion very carefully. None of the information that the member is putting before the House can be remotely related to this. Broad-ranging? No, it is not. This is about workers and industrial relations.

Mr HUTCHINSON: Who employs the workers?


Ms Hall: No, it is not about condemning employers. It is not about anything like that. It is about workplace relations.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! The member for Shortland has made her point. The member for Shortland will resume her seat. Member for Lyons, I would ask you to return to the substance of the motion.

Mr HUTCHINSON: I return to point (1) on the motion before us today and say that we should celebrate people like Josef Chromy, who, through endeavour and initiative, has been able to employ hundreds and thousands of Tasmanians. He started with nothing. Work rates are set by an independent authority, the Fair Work Commission, which was set up by those opposite. This is a ruse. They have no case. I have no case to answer. (Time expired)