Letters from the Premier

United Voice members – finally we get what you have been asking 6 months to get. At long last, the Premier has seen fit to confirm they have no plans to contract out school cleaning before 2015.

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(You can click on the letter to see a full size version)

Through your actions – advocating to Minister Langbroek and other government MPs, and demonstrating at the Executive Building, the Premier has at last given what we all thought was an easy request. I’m sure, like me, you welcome this assurance on the jobs of cleaners.

The Premier says I’ve been lying. He says the guarantee was always there. Well, your rank and file representatives on your Industry Committee didn’t believe him. They accepted Minister Langbroek’s assurances in good faith, but made the point this Premier could and might overrule his Minister 

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(You can click on the letter to see a full size version)

When your delegates saw EBs castrated through a Directive then hasty legislation, they worried more. When they saw the definition of front line services move, they worried further. When they saw the conditions of teachers under attack despite the Premier saying front line service workers would not be affected, they continued to worry.

You decide when the Premier says one minute he’s “having a lot of fun” then the next says he worried sick, who’s lying. You judge whether a Premier who says nobody has raised concerns with him over job cuts, who says nobody was advised by email of job losses, that everybody leaving is doing so as a cheerful volunteer, is on strong grounds to accuse others of lying.

The Premier says I’m lying to score political points. When he refused to answer questions in Parliament about contracting out of cleaning jobs, he also said he didn’t know that the Borbidge Government had tried that. It’s no surprise then that he doesn’t know how hard we publicly campaigned together against the Bligh government when it flirted with contracting out. He doesn’t know how we demonstrated time and again against the Bligh government outside Community Cabinet meetings, and in the community. The fact that Teacher Aides took strike action against the last government is lost on the Premier.

He wants the public to believe that our anger at his casual disregard for your worry is ‘political’. You should know, members, that your union campaigns against any government that threatens your conditions and job security.

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(You can click on the letter to see a full size version)

Members, this assurance from the Premier is welcomed. But I ask you to consider whether you believe they will be maintained beyond the life of the EB? Therefore we should all be talking to our local Member of Parliament – whichever party they belong to – about these issues and seek longer term assurances. Waiting to renegotiate our EBs won’t work. We need to get assurances for the future NOW.

- Gary Bullock, Secretary, United Voice QLD

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