QCU General Secretary Ros McLennan responds to the 2016-17 State Budget handed down on 14 June ...
This is a positive Budget for jobs and frontline services and that’s good for Queenslanders.
It addresses three important areas:
- It puts job creation and public infrastructure front and centre
- It invests in delivering frontline services like health and education and community safety
- It seeks to strengthen our community through increased funding for action on domestic violence
This Budget makes a difference in the areas where Malcolm Turnbull and the federal LNP are dropping the ball.
It’s clear that Queensland has not got its fair share from the Abbott-Turnbull LNP government.
Turnbull says Queensland has to sell off revenue-raising public assets before it gets any of the $5 billion of taxpayers money that the federal government has for public projects across Australia.
That’s just forcing an ideological agenda onto Queenslanders – an asset-sales agenda that they have rejected twice at elections.
The Queensland Government has pledged to keep revenue-raising public assets in public hands and we support that – as do the Queensland voting public. In contrast, the LNP’s only financial plan was to sell off public assets and cut frontline jobs – and they were punished for it.
It just shows how out-of-touch Malcolm Turnbull and the LNP are on the issues that matter to Queenslanders.
Today’s Budget sets out a responsible and sensible plan to use funds in the public sector defined benefits scheme to retire debt and fund infrastructure that Queensland needs to create jobs and generate growth.
These funds will go towards building projects for communities, stimulating regional economies and getting the unemployed back in work.
Today’s Budget also acknowledges that Queenslanders deserve accessible and affordable frontline community services, like health and education.
It delivers on more doctors, more nurses, more teachers, more in community safety – all frontline services that the Newman LNP government cut with relish.
Today we heard that the Queensland government will also make a further major commitment to addressing domestic violence in our community, in contrast to the Abbott-Turnbull government which won’t put domestic violence leave into collective agreements.
That’s something the union movement has fought long and hard for but we have a federal LNP government reluctant to support measures to address the community destruction caused by domestic violence. It’s shameful that federal IR minister Michaelia Cash has turned her back.
Today’s Budget is consistent with the election promises of the Palaszczuk government, and there’s no LNP-style nasty surprises.
It’s a clear commitment to Labor principles, and the Queensland Council of Unions welcomes that.