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Reith leaves ruins: right reaps rewards

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Reith Leaves Ruins - Right Reaps Rewards Arch Bevis - Shadow Minister for Industrial Relations

Media Statement - 19 December 2000

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Peter Reith has left behind a smouldering ruin of failed industrial relations reform and is now set to take aim at Australian Defence Force personnel and their families, Shadow Minister for Industrial Relations, Arch Bevis, said today.

Mr Bevis said Peter Reith would be remembered as the minister who scored a 100% fail rate, with six out of six Bills rejected by Parliament.

'But even more, Peter Reith will be remembered as the Minister who introduced balaclavas and Rottweilers to workplace negotiations,' Mr Bevis said.

He said Reith's move to defence was a sad day for soldiers and their families.

'They've got every reason to be concerned that they will now bear the brunt of Reith's trademark heavy handedness,' he said.

Mr Bevis said John Howard's decision to promote Tony Abbott to the Industrial Relations portfolio, and move Reith to Defence, is a massive reward for the right wing of the Liberal Party.

'By any standard, Reith should have been stood down over the Telecard affair,' he said.

Mr Bevis said Tony Abbott had tried to make his name as an apprentice head-kicker and looks set to continue his career with the divisive Reith industrial relations agenda.

Authorised by Geoff Walsh, 19 National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600.