Senate debates

Tuesday, 3 August 2021



1:36 pm

Photo of Tony SheldonTony Sheldon (NSW, Australian Labor Party) Share this | Hansard source

[by video link] I rise to congratulate the 2,000 aviation workers and the Transport Workers Union, who on Friday won a monumental case in the Federal Court against Qantas. Last year, while taking $2 billion from the federal government to keep workers in jobs, Alan Joyce outsourced 2,000 ground staff. The Federal Court ruled that Qantas and Alan Joyce had broken the law, and today I'm calling on Alan Joyce to do the honourable thing, for the first time as the Qantas CEO, and resign. If Joyce does not go then Qantas investors should be calling for him and his executive team to go.

While this is a massive relief for those 2,000 workers, one person who will be devastated by this triumph is Senator Stoker. Senator Stoker would act as a mouthpiece for Alan Joyce in this place and has slated those Qantas ground crew, many of whom built that company. They have worked for decades and raised families. So perhaps Senator Stoker can explain why the Morrison government has cut ground crew out of the latest aviation support package, a pretty petty and vindictive act for a government that has outsourced aviation policy to Alan Joyce.

Justice Lee, in handing down his decision said, that:

The key concern of making the outsourcing decision at the time that it was made was because of the vanishing window of opportunity—

caused by the operational disruption of the pandemic. There's a series of clear statements from the Federal Court judge that this matter was premeditated, preplanned and instrumental in those workers being terminated.


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