Page 206 - Week 01 - Wednesday, 13 February 1991

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Question put:

That the motion (Mr Wood's) be agreed to.

The Assembly voted -

AYES, 6  NOES, 10

Mr Berry Mr Collaery
Mr Connolly Mr Duby
Ms Follett Mr Humphries
Mrs Grassby Mr Jensen
Mr Moore Mr Kaine
Mr Wood Dr Kinloch
 Ms Maher
 Mrs Nolan
 Mr Prowse
 Mr Stefaniak

Question so resolved in the negative.


MR BERRY (12.15): It is with some regret that I rise to move:

That the Alliance Government has demonstrated its inability to provide competent industrial relations management in the ACT.

That is surely true. The first thing that I should do is to extend congratulations to the trade union movement for the exercise of restraint that we have seen from the unions in the face of the activities of this Government. The trade unions have worked out - they worked it out very early - that this Government is an aberration, and that it will not be something that it will have to put up with for all time. They have decided that it is not worth entering into a war with this Government when there will be relief at some time in the future. There are plenty of targets for the trade union movement to have a look at in respect of this Government's performance. They are waiting for a change in government, and they will surely get one.

I want to talk about the first dispute that we saw mishandled by this Government. The prize-fighter in this case was Mr Humphries, although some people might say that he was a prize-something-or-other. However, in this case I think Mr Humphries at least saw himself as the prize-fighter. We had three weeks of confrontation and disruption in the hospital system. That basically showed the intentions of this Government, as the Minister moved on the union to enter into an extended battle to attack the working conditions of nurses. One of the headlines which clearly shows what the dispute was all about reads as follows:

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