Where Ge­orge leads, city em­ploy­ers should fol­low

Townsville Bulletin - - OPINION -

I READ with in­ter­est in the Townsville Bul­letin dated June 21 that Ge­orge Chris­tensen, the Mem­ber for Daw­son, bravely crossed the floor of Fed­eral Par­lia­ment in an un­suc­cess­ful at­tempt to stop cuts to week­end penalty rates.

Mr Chris­tensen is to be con­grat­u­lated on stand­ing up to a gov­ern­ment that has ac­cepted wage rises of sev­eral thou­sand dol­lars and be­lieves it is ap­pro­pri­ate to give tax cuts to the wealthy but, at the same time, is in­tent on deny­ing work­ers their ba­sic in­dus­trial rights. Re­tail, hos­pi­tal­ity and fast food em­ploy­ees are al­ready among the low­est paid work­ers in the coun­try.

Some em­ploy­ers, in­clud­ing Townsville em­ploy­ers, to their credit, have al­ready stated they will re­tain penalty rates de­spite the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment’s dra­co­nian in­dus­trial de­ci­sion.

It would be won­der­ful if some of our ma­jor em­ploy­ers of ca­sual labour in Townsville could pub­licly state that they in­tend to do the same thing. Em­ploy­ers such as Broth­ers Rugby League Club, the Townsville RSL and the Cow­boys are iconic Townsville iden­ti­ties and are all well pa­tro­n­ised by Townsville’s work­ing peo­ple.

I fre­quent th­ese three en­ti­ties ( some­times a lit­tle too fre­quently, ac­cord­ing to my wife) but if main­tain­ing penalty rates means I have to pay a few ex­tra cents for a beer or an ex­tra dol­lar for a meal to main­tain the sta­tus quo then so be it.

I am of the opin­ion that Townsville’s young peo­ple ( and the ma­jor­ity of peo­ple af­fected are young peo­ple) de­serve a fair go and I am of the be­lief that most peo­ple in our fair city feel the same way. BOB BRICE,


Ge­orge Chris­tensen.

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