As new mining safety laws passed in Queensland this week, a number of members of parliament have hit out against the failure of the Government to deliver on its’ promises to build a mining safety centre in Mackay.
Dale Last (LNP Member for Burdekin) told the Parliament that “The committee (Black Lung White Lies) found that there has been a catastrophic failure at almost every level of the regulatory system intended to protect the health and safety of coal workers in Queensland. While the LNP welcome this sensible legislation(new mining safety legislation), the government’s track record in responding to black lung has been lethargic and unacceptable.”
Last said “The Labor Party refused to listen to their very own Labor member for Bundamba, Jo-Ann Miller. Furthermore, last year the CFMEU called for Minister Lynham to resign over his ‘insensitive and inadequate response’ to the Queensland inquiry into black lung disease, including questioning the scientific evidence for lower dust levels.”
He added “The Black lung white lies report delivered in May 2017 recommended the government establish the authority in Mackay to oversee mine safety and hygiene, conduct medical research and training, and provide medical specialists to diagnose and treat mine dust diseases.”
Mr Last also said that “Miners are still waiting for the Premier to come good on her commitment to establish the Mine Safety and Health Authority in Mackay more than a year after it was promised. It is a betrayal of workers to promise action on an issue as critical as mining safety and then let a year pass with no action. Miners’ health and safety must come before the bureaucracy, and delays in delivering this initiative are simply unacceptable.”
Miners are still waiting for the Premier to come good on her commitment to establish the Mine Safety and Health Authority in Mackay
While there was bipartisan support for the new mine safety bill, many Queensland opposition members believed that the Queensland Government was bogged down in Bureaucracy in respect of Mining Safety.
Jason Costigan, the LNP Member for Whitsunday added to the conversation regarding the bill “……However, we owe it to miners—the men and women who dig up the black gold—to look after the workers. There are holes in the system and it needs to be fixed. This bill will go some way, but Labor has been dillydallying on this issue and the Palaszczuk
He told the parliament “Labor government needs to be called out on that. If we were taking mine safety seriously, this would have been before the House some time ago. Again, I remind honourable members that we are still waiting for the mine health and safety authority to be established in Mackay. It cannot come soon enough.”
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