Sensible decision by Minister Michaelia Cash to deny the Labor Party access to confidential volumes of TURC report
There has been far too much timidity in the treatment and characterisation of the Labor Party and its parent the unions in the conduct and wake of the TURC.
It is simply not possible to discuss corruption in trade unions without implicating the Labor Party.
If there is endemic widespread corruption and crime in trade unions, then there is endemic widespread corruption and crime in the Labor Party.
The decision to deny Labor access to the confidential volumes of the TURC is a good one - however it's still cloaked in political terms to do with pending legislation on the ABCC and reforms of the unions. Call a spade a spade Michaelia - tell us they can't have the reports because they are part of the organised crime and racketeering exposed at the TURC. There are well founded fears that crooks will be tipped off and witnesses 'fixed".
Plain and simple.
Labor blocked from seeing secret union volumes
The Turnbull government has refused to give Labor access to secret volumes of the Heydon royal commission report on trade unions, declaring it would not be in the public interest.
Employment Minister Michaelia Cash raised concerns yesterday that information about several witnesses could be leaked and investigations compromised if it granted Labor’s request to provide “all sides of the parliament” and “other interested parties” with the documents.
The rejection will outrage opposition employment spokesman Brendan O’Connor, brother of militant Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union national secretary Michael O’Connor, as Senate crossbenchers prepare to view the chapters in full once parliament returns next week “under strict confidentiality provisions”.
Labor wrote to Senator Cash requesting access to the chapters after The Weekend Australian revealed that the government would allow crossbenchers to look at the documents in a desperate bid to end the stalemate over its industrial relations reforms.
Commissioner Dyson Heydon recommended the confidential chapters be kept secret to protect the physical wellbeing of several witnesses and their families and prevent any investigation or prosecution from being undermined. There is also a non-publication order for the third volume of the royal commission’s interim report.
In a letter sent from Senator Cash to Brendan O’Connor yesterday, the minister said Mr Heydon’s rulings did not prevent the government from providing “limited access” to these volumes to “appropriate individuals”, but declined Labor’s demand.