Thursday, 3 June 2010
Questions without Notice
Kevin Rudd (Griffith, Australian Labor Party, Prime Minister) Share this | Hansard source
The member’s question went to both jobs and workers’ entitlements. On the question of jobs, my response to him, being a member from the west, was along the lines I have just described. Those comments equally apply to the impact of the government’s measures on stimulus payments in the state of Queensland. I suggest that he also looks at the impact through the most recently released gross state product figures for Queensland and other states to conclude where the actual contribution lies from federal government stimulus investments. The Minister for Finance and Deregulation has just referred to that in the case of the state of Victoria and made appropriate reference to statements recently by the Liberal shadow Treasurer of Victoria to that effect.
Secondly, on the question of workers’ entitlements, I would say this to the member for Stirling, as he cries crocodile tears about workers’ entitlements and workers’ rights: workers’ entitlements and workers’ rights are infinitely better as a result of this government’s change to the laws than existed under the government of which he was part. We had also under this government, through the abolition of Work Choices, made sure that basic conditions for working people and working families were protected, not destroyed—not least of which was protection from unfair dismissal.
Those opposite stand for the repeal of the government’s protections against unfair dismissal. We stand for the protection of workers from unfair dismissal and we also apply the standard support measures for any worker in this economy who finds themselves unemployed for whatever reasons. This government’s policies in support of jobs and in support of measures relating to the conditions of workers and, on top of that, protection from unfair dismissal exists in a legion above and beyond anything ever considered or supported by those opposite when they occupied the Treasury bench.