A Queensland member of parliament said he believes that Queensland miners have been ‘short shanked’ by the failure of the Queensland Government to implement recommendations from the Black Lung White Lies Inquiry.
Former mineworker and Member for Mirani, Steve Andrew said he was disheartened that the implementation of Black Lung White Lies inquiry recommendations and that the implementation of the Black Lung Bill was not adopted by the Queensland Government.
Mr Andrews said he made a commitment to former member Jim Pearce (ALP) that he would try to introduce a Bill to Parliament on controlling mine dust disease.
He said that miners were ‘short shanked’ on the Black Lung Bill by the Queensland Government.
Mr Andrew explained that the former ALP member for Bundamba, Joanne Miller (who recently resigned from Parliament) had worked tirelessly to try to get the Queensland Government to implement the Bill to protect Queensland mineworkers from the scourge of Black Lung disease.
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Mr Andrew’s rousing speech in the Queensland Parliament yesterday (see excerpt below) highlighted a range of failures in Queensland mine safety system.
He told Parliament yesterday that the Queensland Auditor-General confirmed that only 20 of 66 recommendations from the Black Lung Inquiry in Queensland had been implemented.
Mr Andrews said he supported the introduction of industrial manslaughter ‘as it would only affect those who are not doing the right things at Queensland mines’ but he said he was against the changes to Statutory Roles believing that they are not practical or sustainable.
He said he was concerned that a range of statutory officials would simply retire from the industry because of the changes saying “many will not have a desire or will to be a direct employee of mining companies having established their own businesses.”
“They will retire and we will lose hundred of years of experience along with them” he said.
He accused the Queensland Government of doing nothing for the labour-hire employees of Queensland with the proposed changes saying that “if we going to put changes in place to require permanent roles, why didn’t (the Qld Government) do it for all the workers.
You can watch a short video of the Member for Mirani’s speech below or you can watch the full speech here
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