What happens on Monday?

Posted March 21, 2012 by Alex Scott

Elections and election promises matter.

Government and government policies matter more.

On Saturday, the Queensland community will decide which political party will form the state government for the next three years.

Your union is not endorsing any political party in this election.  We have engaged with the four major political parties on a range of issues chosen by members.  I believe that our campaign has improved the quality of the promises made by all the political parties on these issues. I encourage you to consider the responses to these questions and the statements from the party leaders when deciding who to vote for this Saturday. 

As public sector workers, what politicians do when they are in government is more important to us than what they promise during election campaigns.  It is a sad fact that election promises are not always translated to government policies. Sometimes politicians lie; sometimes politicians change their minds. It's good to have election commitments from politicians, but we cannot assume that these promises will translate into reality after Saturday. 

Next week your union will continue to campaign to protect and improve members' employment security, workloads and their services to the community.

The focus of both the ALP and the LNP has been on increasing "frontline" services and reducing "non-frontline" positions but little detail has been provided on what is "frontline".  It's easy for politicians to focus on the high profile work of nurses, schools teachers and police officers but ignore the vital work of thousands of other public sector workers.

The more the community understands the work done by public sector workers, the more they will force politicians to appropriately fund the services you provide.  That is why your union's Council will next week be considering a community focused campaign, "Working for Queenslanders," which will be funded from our union's public sector defence fund and which will build more community support for public services in the coming months.

During the current state election campaign, both the LNP and ALP have indicated cuts to "non-frontline" positions within the public service.  Unlike politicians, we all know that all public sector workers play a significant role in delivering better services to Queensland.  But unfortunately we have already seen over 4,000 "non-frontline" public servants take voluntary separations in the last six months and the current government has a target of at least 5,000.

The LNP have indicated that they will also reduce the number of "non-frontline" public servants, but by natural attrition. 

One of the most important roles of your union is to protect members' employment security.  That is why we have campaigned hard to get the major political parties to commit to no forced retrenchments. 

We need to work together as a union to make sure that these job losses are truly voluntary and that job losses do not have an adverse impact on those who remain.

I will ensure that we have a strong industrial campaign about protecting the employment security and workloads of every public servant. 

Every public sector job is important and necessary and we need to speak up and speak out about the vital nature of your work.

While our "Working for Queenslanders" campaign will focus on the importance of public services to the community, there will be a complimentary industrial campaign to protect the employment security and workloads of all public sector workers, whatever politicians and departments call them.

It is essential that public servants and public services continue to have a strong and powerful voice in the community. I look forward to what we can achieve together.


Authorised Alex Scott, Secretary, Together.
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