War over a legislative paragraph continues as jobs go

AS FEDERAL and State Ministers wage a war of words over a legislative paragraph, 35 Fraser Coast public health workers face redundancy on Friday with their future employment still effectively blocked.

The future of the Home and Community Care workers has been thrown into doubt after Together Union regional manager Jim Nilon spoke out about a provision in the Federal Government's Fair Work Act.

The provision was aimed at helping employees to keep the conditions and wages they had in their State Government employment, after their roles were outsourced to the private sector.

But Mr Nilon said many private organisations were unwilling or unable to meet those conditions.

Queensland Health Minister Lawrence Springborg said the provision should be repealed immediately so these workers would have no obstacles to finding employment in the private sector.

However, Federal Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten accused Mr Springborg of lying to the 14,000 public sector workers they sacked when they told them before the election that their jobs would be safe.

"His blame shifting is wrong, dishonest and it's insulting to the Queenslanders he has sacked," a spokesman for the minister said.

"It is only Labor which stands up for the wages and conditions of Queenslanders.

"All the Liberals are interested in is cutting wages and conditions, as proved by Mr Springborg calling for these workplace protections to be scrapped."



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