Failed La­bor vote la­belled a stunt

Mercury (Hobart) - - NEWS - DAVID KILLICK Po­lit­i­cal Edi­tor

THE State Gov­ern­ment has de­nounced a La­bor at­tempt to move an­other no-con­fi­dence mo­tion in Health Min­is­ter Micheal Ferguson as “a stunt”.

The at­tempt was voted down in State Par­lia­ment yes­ter­day.

Op­po­si­tion leader Re­becca White moved the 15-point mo­tion af­ter Ques­tion Time.

Premier Will Hodg­man said it was a waste of par­lia­men­tary time.

“Their failed at­tempt to bring on a no-con­fi­dence mo­tion to­day is just an­other way to dis­rupt par­lia­ment and draw at­ten­tion away from the fact that they refuse to of­fer any­thing con­struc­tive, like an al­ter­na­tive bud­get,” he said.

“This is off the back of seven pre­vi­ous failed no-con­fi­dence or cen­sure mo­tion at­tempts, which ul­ti­mately con­sumed more than 20 hours of the par­lia­ment’s time.”

Speaker Sue Hickey backed the mo­tion to hold a de­bate, but La­bor fell short of the twothirds ma­jor­ity re­quired for it to pro­ceed.

Much of yes­ter­day’s Ques­tion Time was taken up with questions about Mr Ferguson’s fail­ure to re­spond to con­cerns raised with him by the nurses’ union on May 16.

The let­ter asked for an ur­gent re­sponse to discuss un­der­staffed and over­worked psy­chi­atric emer­gency nurses work­ing in “dan­ger­ous con­di­tions with of­ten scared and volatile pa­tients”.

On June 6, a week af­ter its May 27 dead­line, the union by­passed Mr Ferguson, appealing directly to the Premier and other MPs.

Mr Ferguson replied to their let­ter yes­ter­day morn­ing, an hour be­fore par­lia­ment sat.

The re­quested meet­ing has not been held.

Ms White said Mr Ferguson should be re­placed.

“The Gov­ern­ment have again used their num­bers to­day to block de­bate around a se­ri­ous no con­fi­dence mo­tion in the Min­is­ter for Health Michael Ferguson,” she said.

“Over­all, we’ve seen a de­cline in health ser­vices in this state over the last five years — for the en­tire time the min­is­ter has been the Health Min­is­ter.

“Michael Ferguson now has been Health Min­is­ter for half a decade and things are un­for­tu­nately get­ting worse.”

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