THE AUSTRALIAN Parliament has taken a long overdue step towards improving the governance, transparency and management of trade unions and registered employer organisations by today voting up legislation to establish a new Registered Organisations Commission.

“The resource industry congratulates the government and Senate crossbenchers for getting this legislation over the line,” says AMMA chief executive Steve Knott.

“We hope this is the start of a process of pushing back against the ALP/ Greens/ Jacqui Lambie Alliance that seeks to shield these groups from a higher level of governance that is standard operating practice in every other business undertaking.

“While AMMA has long maintained that all registered organisations should be regulated under the Corporations Act 2001, just as companies and their directors are, the new Registered Organisations Commission is a sound policy outcome and will significantly improve the governance and accountability of Australian unions and registered employer groups.”

Resource employers are now looking to the Australian Parliament to address the far more substantive issue of lawlessness and corruption in the construction sector – an issue which impacts taxpayers, communities and small, medium and large businesses.

“It’s well beyond time that the Australian Parliament draws a line under the abhorrent behaviours we are seeing coming out of the construction sector, and supports the restoration of the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC),” Mr Knott continues.

“Intimidation, thuggery and outright lawlessness should not be accepted anywhere, including in one of the key pillars of our national economy that involves massive amounts of public spending and the delivery of critical community and productive infrastructure.

“It is disappointing that the ALP/ Greens/ Jacqui Lambie Alliance continues to oppose the ABCC in the interests of protecting their union mates, when all this legislation would require them to do is comply with the nation’s workplace laws.

“This is something that daily events on Australian construction sites, and multiple Royal Commissions, have shown these union officials continually fail to do.

“Just this week there are reports that more than $100 billion worth of major projects in Australia have been specifically targeted by the CFMEU’s militancy, including some of the largest resources and energy projects ever built anywhere in the world.

“We trust the Senate crossbench to act in the national interest and ultimately pass this legislation rather than leaving the job half done.”

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