Changes to Queensland’s WorkCover scheme have been passed in parliament today as thousands of protestors gathered outside.
But Campbell Newman’s decision to push ahead could be costly with recent polls indicating his seat of Ashgrove is in danger.
Nicholas Chin reports.
The message is loud and clear.
But the boos and cries from Queensland’s blue collar workers are too little too late, the Attorney-General giving the new WorkCover scheme its royal assent this afternoon.
John Battams, Qeensland Council of Unions President: “Absolute Nonsense.”
The changes will see journey claims abolished and a reduction to the rights of workers who are injured due to employer’s negligence.
John Battams, Queensland Council of Unions: “The Government have seeded to the pressure of the big end of town and decided to change it and in the interests of big businesses, not in the interest of Queenslanders.”
Lawyers say Campbell Newman’s decision to rush the new legislation through Parliament will come back to haunt him.
Rod Hodgson, Australian Lawyers Alliance: “If the scheme passes, as we expect it to today, and is slashed and burned, this is an issue that will resonate through to the next election.”
The opposition attacked the Attorney-General for introducing the reform forcing the Premier to step in.
Campbell Newman, Queensland Premier: “This Attorney-General has had the ticka, the guts to actually stand up to entrenched interest right across this state without fear or favour and do what’s best for Queenslanders.”
Queensland workers are amongst the best protected in the country, but the business sector say this new legislation will bring a balance between employees and their bosses.
Peter Gaske, Queensland Trucking Association CEO: “We needed reform and we congratulate the government for the reform they are introducing.”
Nicholas Chin, QUT News.