Page 2340 - Week 08 - Wednesday, 5 August 2015
Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption
MR WALL (Brindabella) (3.36): I move:
That this Assembly:
(a) the ongoing Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption is currently investigating the activities of the ACT Branch of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU);
(b) a number of former CFMEU and former ALP members are facing charges;
(c) the very close political relationship between the ACT Labor Party and the CFMEU;
(d) the significant contribution made by the ACT Branch of the CFMEU to ACT Labor and the ACT Greens election campaigns, both financially and by way of supportive third party campaigns;
(e) elected members of the ACT Labor Party and the ACT Greens currently form the Government in the ACT; and
(f) silence on the part of both ACT Labor and the ACT Greens; and
(2) calls on the ACT Government’s Labor and Green members to suspend all financial and political links with the CFMEU pending the outcome of the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance.
The motion I have brought to this place today is dedicated to the many Canberra businesses and individuals who have played a part in attempting to bring to light the unscrupulous union practices occurring on building sites in our suburbs and town centres. The local businesses that have been brave enough to come forward and give evidence at the royal commission have taken big risks in doing so. They have risked their livelihoods and their reputations in the process.
These risks are perceived because a culture of fear has taken hold in the ACT construction sector—a culture of fear perpetuated by standover men, a culture being perpetuated by price-fixing and by threats being made to businesses that they will not work in the ACT unless they play the CFMEU game. It appears that thuggery and bullying are behaviour that is well entrenched on ACT building sites.
However, it is hopeful that some of this scourge may now have been purged as a result of the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption coming to our town. The royal commission’s focus on the ACT has given local businesses the confidence to speak out about the allegedly corrupt and criminal behaviour perpetrated by the CFMEU over many years. The CFMEU tried to put a stop to these