Queenland WorkSafe inspectors have come out this week, refusing to attend union sites due to concern over the safety of inspectors.
The announcement comes as QLD WHS inspectors raised concerns over threats and intimidation by CFMMEU officials across the state, and just two weeks after the ABCC commenced two sets of legal proceedings against the CFMMEU for breaching the Fair Work Act on Government funded, union-dominated work sites.
When interviewed on the subject, Minister for Jobs, Industrial Relations and Women, the Hon. Kelly O’Dwyer MP, said “it’s clear that in Queensland something is very wrong on construction sites. We have had revelations that QLD WHS inspectors don’t feel safe on certain construction sites because of fears of occupational violence”.
She went on to say that “the militant CFMMEU, and 78 of their officials are currently before the courts for potentially 800 contraventions. It isn’t right that work health and safety inspectors don’t feel safe on construction sites… And if they don’t feel safe because they are concerned about occupational violence, then what hope is there for small business owners; for those people who are doing construction work as contractors on these sites, workers, and apprentices? What hope is there for them to feel safe from threats and intimidations?”
Master Builders Australia’s CEO Denita Wawn said, “The fact that the Queensland Government’s own safety inspectors will not attend CFMMEU dominated sites because they fear for their own safety just hows how deeply the problem of CFMMEU bullying entrenched has become, and why a special regulator is needed to tackle it. Safety is the number one priority on construction sites and this shows yet again why CFMMEU bullying undermines good safety outcomes”.
She went on to reinforce that it’s ‘mum and dad’ small and medium businesses who are the prime target of construction union thugs and that it’s the community that pays for the increased cost of construction that results by paying up to 30 per cent more for schools, hospitals and roads.
Master Builders believes that this action by the QLD WHS inspectors is a timely reminder of the damage abolishing the ABCC would do to the construction industry. As Denita Wawn said, “The ABCC is essential to stopping bullying on building sites and thereby promoting better safety outcomes”.