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Public Sector Stop Work Actions

Kim Booth

Kim Booth  -  Thursday, 27 November 2014

Tags: Wages

The appalling mishandling of the public sector budget cuts has resulted in a serious break down of communication between the government and the state sector which left the Greens with little choice but to move no confidence in Premier, Greens Leader Kim Booth MP said today.

“The Premier has lost control of this issue. Will Hodgman has presided over a government which has allowed the situation to escalate to the degree that in just seven short months the state has witnessed the largest industrial action in over twenty years,” Mr Booth said.

“Tens of thousands of public sector workers statewide attended stop work meetings, and reiterated their willingness to accept a wage freeze, only to once again be rejected by the Hodgman government.”

“The Premier, as the Minister responsible for the State Service Act, has failed in his responsibility to intervene on numerous occasions over the last few months and prevent the situation escalating to the current boiling point.”

 “The Premier has failed our teachers, children and parents by failing to intervene and stopping the cut of 266 teachers from our schools.”

“The Premier has failed to deliver his election promise of no cuts to frontline services.”

“The Premier failed to demonstrate leadership and require the recommendations of the independent workplace umpire, the Tasmanian industrial Commission, be implemented.”

“As responsible Minister, the Premier has failed in his duty of care to public sector workers, by allowing staff morale to plummet while a culture of fear, trepidation and escalation becomes entrenched.”

“In short, the Premier’s failed to act, and as a result Mr Hodgman must take responsibility for the current impasse and growing discord between the government and the state sector, upon which so many in our community relies.”

“Today’s industrial action, and the growing frustration distrust and anger within the community over the government’s appalling mishandling of this matter all could have been avoided had the Premier demonstrated leadership, intervened and directed his Treasurer to enter into good-faith negotiations with the unions.”

“Tasmanians and our hard-working public sector unions are fed up with having their intelligence insulted by the broken promises, the belligerent blame games and deception employed by the Liberals under Mr Hodgman.”

“No confidence motions are very serious indeed, and the Greens did not undertake this debate lightly.  But witnessing the arrogant dismissal and deliberate scapegoating of the state’s public sector workers over recent months by the Premier and his Ministers, culminating in the knee-jerk rejection of today’s stop work meeting resolutions endorsing a wage freeze, it was time to say enough is enough.”

“The Greens have no confidence in this Premier or his government that rules by fear, vilification and misrepresentation,” Mr Booth said.

During the previous period of government, the then-Liberal Opposition debated numerous no-confidence and censure motions in Ministers, totally 50.27 hours of the parliament’s time.