Why This Bill Matters

Right across the country, Aussie workers are being subjected to vile and threatening behaviour while just trying to do their job.

When a pregnant woman is left cowering after dozens of balaclava-clad union thugs storm her office [1], or when inspectors flee job sites after being spat on, or when people on worksites are called offensive and disrespectful names such as “dogs”, “scum”, “scabs”, “gutless grubs”, “weak as p*ss” and “lower than a paedophile” [2], something needs to be done.

It is time to say enough is enough!

Please stand up against unacceptable abuse in our workplaces by supporting the Ensuring Integrity Bill.

Some cashed up unions consider existing fines as “simply the cost of doing business” [3] – with around 70 CFMEU figures currently before the courts, facing more than 750 alleged contraventions of the law[4].

In fact, the Federal Court has described the union as “the most recidivist corporate offender in Australian history”[5].

We cannot afford for anyone – unions or employers – to believe that they are above the law!  

The Ensuring Integrity Bill will empower our courts to truly tackle the demeaning, corrupt and thuggish behaviour that currently exists in some of the dark corners on Australian worksites.

These critically important changes will allow our courts to take real action against officials who repeatedly break the law, striking them off for good where they stubbornly, repeatedly and knowingly continue to break the law despite multiple warnings to change their ways. Unions with ingrained cultures of disrespect and lawlessness can also face binding court orders and even deregistration if they don’t change the way they do business.

Australia, our Senators need to hear your voice. Please stand up against workplace abuse.

[1] DPP v Johnston [2004] VSCA 150

2 Australian Building and Construction Commissioner v Parker [2017] FCA 564 and Australian Building and Construction Commissioner v Ingham (No 2) (The Enoggera Barracks Case) [2018] FCA 263

3 Australian Building and Construction Commissioner v Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union [2017] FCA 1269 at [45]

4 As at 10 February 2020

5 Australian Building and Construction Commissioner v Hanna & Anor (No.3) [2017] FCCA 2519 at [50]

* as at 10 February 2020