Territory Stories

Debates Day 6 - Thursday 19 October 2017



Debates Day 6 - Thursday 19 October 2017

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Parliamentary Record 8


Debates for 13th Assembly 2016 - 2018; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 13th Assembly 2016 - 2020




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES Thursday 19 October 2017 2754 As parents, we feel that we have to tell our children the key to success and prosperity lies in a good education. Thirty-five years of globalisation and technological revolution have resulted in a rapid decline of the manufacturing and blue collar jobs that were once the backbone of our economy. These were union jobs that offered good wages, superb health benefits and the security of a pension at retirement time. However, as we are seeing today, these jobs are vanishing. World War II had a big impact on the Australian workforce. Women entered the workforce in large numbers and for the first time many earned wages close to the rates earned by their male counterparts. Large scale post-war migration started to change the nature of the workforce and Australian culture. Australias involvement in the Vietnam War generated a mass anti -war movement involving some unions. The short term of the Whitlam Labor government in 1972 to 1975 saw a number of significant reforms, including equal pay. As a result of the Second World War, women replaced male workers in a wide range of industries. Workbased childcare facilities were provided, and most women at that time received 90% pay equivalent to their male counterparts. There is a huge timeline I can read through to highlight all the amazing things unions have done. It bothers me to sit in this Chamber day-in and day-out to hear somebody disparage unions and the work they have done for decades. I am happy to stand here during sittings and in adjournment to remind everybody of the amazing things unions have done, for as long as we have to listen to that sort of conversation. While the opposition speaks of unions with complete disdain and distrust, I am proud to again state publicly and on record that I am a proud member of the Australian Services Union and a member of the Australian Labor Party. If that means I have to sit in this Chamber and listen to the opposition call me a puppet, so be it. I will wear that with pride. I am more than happy to stand up in adjournment and remind everyone of the great things our unions have done for us, and if that means I continue to be a puppet to a union that does great things and fights inequality, then so be it. The Australian Labor Party has had a long relationship with trade unions and we will not apologise for that. I feel a lot of sympathy for opposition members when they cannot see the benefit unions have provided to this wonderful Territory and our country. The Assembly adjourned.