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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 4 Hansard (2 May) . . Page.. 1067..


Ms MacDONALD (continuing):

think that you can get there five minutes before the shop opens, if you happen to work in a clerical setting in a retail area. You need to be there in advance of time."

There were plenty of times when I worked cooperatively with the employer, and as a general rule I walked in the door with the intention of trying to work cooperatively with the employer, to make sure that their job went smoothly, and that their role and those of my members ran smoothly, because I would rather see both sides win by my negotiating on their behalf. Certainly I was there representing my member or my members, but at the end of the day if I could help my members out by actually assisting the manager or the boss of whatever description I would do that. On many occasions I was complimented on the fact that I had done that.

Coming back to the original point: I saw conditions that were not acceptable, and that was under the previous system. Yesterday, as you, Mr Temporary Deputy Speaker alluded to, was May Day. I am from New South Wales originally and Labour Day in New South Wales is in October; it is not in May. But my other half, of course, is from Queensland, and he always views May Day as being Labour Day, because that is the way it is in Queensland.

Of course, yesterday we saw the start of the Fair Pay Commission, which I think was done deliberately as an insult to working families, to say: "Well, here you go, it is May Day, it is Labour Day, we will rub in these new conditions. We will rub it into you with this Fair Pay Commission,"because who knows how they will be assessing things; they certainly do not give out too much information of how they will be assessing raises to the minimum wage. So I hold grave fears for what the future holds for working families in Canberra, and working families throughout this country, under the new industrial relations legislation. I noted last night that Sharan Burrow refused to call it WorkChoices, because there is no choice in there for employees. I would say that that is certainly a fair comment to make.

This is a matter that I believe is of grave concern for all of us in this place. It is all very well and good to say that we need to make it easier for business to operate. I think you will find that there are many people out there in the business community who think that this federal government has gone too far.

THE TEMPORARY DEPUTY SPEAKER: The discussion is concluded.

Adjournment

Motion by (Mr Barr ) proposed:

That the Assembly do now adjourn.

New Italy settlement—political activity

Mr Andrew Barr

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (4.46): Members may recall that the last time I rose in this place I spoke about the 125th anniversary of the founding of the New Italy settlement near Lismore and I spoke about the great pride in my family of that association. I wanted to sort of move on from that slightly because, although I did not make it to the 125th


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