Senate debates

Monday, 20 June 2011

Bills

Governance of Australian Government Superannuation Schemes Bill 2011, ComSuper Bill 2011, Superannuation Legislation (Consequential Amendments and Transitional Provisions) Bill 2011; In Committee

9:31 pm

Photo of Mathias CormannMathias Cormann (WA, Liberal Party, Shadow Assistant Treasurer) Share this | Hansard source

And of course here we have Senator Cameron, on cue, and Senator Pratt, on cue, doing as they are told, acting as the agents of the union movement. Madam Chair, you tell me why it is appropriate, when only 41 per cent of public sector employees are members of a union, that unions should have 100 per cent of the employee representatives positions on the board to be created under this legislation.

Senator Cameron interjecting—

And they are jumping up and down, and yelling and screaming, because of course they feel exposed. They know that they are conflicted. They know that what they are doing is not right. They know it is inappropriate. Why should the 59 per cent of employees who choose not to be a member of a union not have representation on the board to be created under this legislation? Furthermore, why should the ACTU have this sort of control over military superannuation arrange­ments, as is to be enshrined by this legislation?

This legislation is completely inappropriate. It is not driven by the public interest; it is driven by the Labor Party's consideration of the vested interests of the union movement. Surely if the government was acting in the public interest and in the best interests of public sector employees at least one of the three employee representative positions on this board would be filled by somebody who was not nominated by the ACTU. You tell me one good reason, Madam Chair, why the 59 per cent of public sector employees who are not members of unions should not have some representation on the board that is looking after their superannuation. The union movement thinks that the superannuation arrangements are their plaything.

We had Senator Sherry out here saying what a great contribution the unions have made to superannuation in Australia. You know what? I would just refer the minister to what is happening with the MTAA. I refer the minister to the things that are happening in the failed merger between—

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