Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 8 Hansard (25 October) . . Page.. 2050 ..
Mrs Carnell: Will not the union movement cooperate with someone who is not - - -
MR BERRY: Mrs Carnell makes this silly interjection: "Will not the union movement cooperate with somebody who is not from the trade union movement?". What I am saying to you is that they will cooperate much better with somebody they respect who comes from within the movement. That is why this amendment has been moved - to ensure that we get the level of cooperation that we have had so far.
Nobody would deny that the projects that have been developed here are innovative. They are some of the first in the country to get into the blue-collar area. It is something that was always intended and it was always known that it was going to be difficult. To maintain the push into that blue-collar area, which is very important, I just ask you to listen to our type of reason in relation to this issue. It is a very important one, and I would plead with you not to oppose it. I think it is a worthwhile issue that ought not be too politically based. It is about making sure that people in the blue-collar area in particular get the right sort of representation on these sorts of boards in order that we get better health promotion results out there in the work force.
MR MOORE (4.46): Mr Speaker, I think that what is disappointing about this amendment is that it is so narrow. Labor always likes to work with the trade unions and prides itself on doing so. They put up this amendment saying that the member with expertise in employee relations or occupational health and safety should be appointed by the Trades and Labour Council. If there is a sustainable argument for that, Mr Speaker, then surely there is a sustainable argument for saying that the person with expertise in business or accountancy should be appointed by, say, the chartered accountants; the member with expertise in media or communications should be appointed by the media - but, of course, Labor would not do that; the person with expertise in community health should be appointed by the public health association; the member with expertise in sport should be appointed by the sports association; and the member with expertise in the arts or culture should be appointed by the Arts Council. That would be the logical way to have gone; but I think most people would say, "No, what we really want to do is ensure that the most appropriate person is appointed".
I remind members that these appointments will be subject to our normal processes under our statutory appointments legislation. Members will have the opportunity to assess who is appointed. If the person does not have the confidence of the trade union movement, as Mr Berry points out, then the logical thing to do is to use that legislation to question the appointment.
Mr Berry: Vote against it, Michael. We will just add it to the list.
MR MOORE: Mr Berry always likes to throw out these little challenges - "Vote against it, Michael; we will corner you", and so on. He will attempt to do so. I have heard these threats again and again. Mr Berry sometimes manages two lines on page 10 of the paper when it is a big paper; but not when that is the editorial page, I might point out. So I am quivering in absolute fear!