Peter Gutwein

Premier of Tasmania

2 March 2021

Guy Barnett, Minister for Resources

Labor’s weak excuses on workplace protection legislation just a smokescreen

The Tasmanian Liberal Government makes no apology for fighting to ensure that Tasmanians can go to work and run their business in a safe manner free from threats and disruption.

Labor’s lacklustre debate in State Parliament today is nothing more than a weak attempt to rewrite history when they joined with the Greens and turned their back on Tasmanian businesses and workers. 

They talk about supporting workers, but are unwilling to actually do anything. 

If Labor really care about workers, they would have supported our Workplace Protection legislation, in the same way as other Labor Governments across Australia have moved to enact further protections.

Labor could have chosen to stand shoulder to shoulder with Tasmanian farmers, miners, foresters, fishers and business people on this Bill.

But once again, Labor demonstrated they are still too close to the Greens when they voted against it.

But it’s not too late for Labor to backflip, just as they did with their position on year 11/12 extension schools last week, and do the right thing and support Tasmanian workers. 

I call on Labor to reverse their position and support our Workplace Protection legislation when it is brought on in the Upper House.

Our proposed laws are needed following an upsurge in business disruption caused by organised actions across the country.

People should be able to safely earn a living without trespassers interfering with their work, threats being made in an effort to shut down their business, or roads being obstructed in order to stop their business operations.

Our Workplace Protection legislation is supported by, among others, TFGA, TCCI, TFPA, the Tasmanian Minerals and Energy Council, the Seafood Industry Council and Small Business Council.

The Government will bring on debate on the Bill in the Upper House as a priority.

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