Western Australia
Thu 8 March 2018

CCF urges Federal Parliament to pass public interest merger laws

Australia’s peak registered employer organisation representing civil construction companies, has joined the growing chorus of employer groups calling on the Australian Parliament to amend union merger laws to introduce a public interest test, similar to corporate entity mergers.

The Civil Contractors Federation has today called on the 11 Senate crossbenchers to work and vote with the Government to pass public interest merger laws as a matter of extreme importance to the national interest.

CCF National CEO Chris Melham said: “I urge the Australian Parliament to pass this legislation in the national interest and in so doing help to avoid unprecedented militant action on our construction sites by the newly approved ‘Super Union’ (i.e. The Fair Work Commission approved merger of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union, the Maritime Union of Australia and the Textile, Clothing and Footwear Union on Tuesday).

“It is critical for the government’s Ensuring Integrity Bill to be amended so it either contains retrospectivity, or, so that it takes effect from the date the legislation is passed in the Parliament, and in the latter, it must be passed prior to 27 March 2018 ( the date the ‘Super Union’ amalgamation comes into effect).

“Further, the public interest test should consider unlawful behaviours that take into account militant action by the said unions as such action severely impacts on the safety and welfare of our construction workers, and in the case of ‘supply block’, our communities and the economy.

“Irrespective of whether it is a corporation or a union merger, potential abuse of market power has the same detrimental effect on business, the economy and the community.

I urge the 11 Senate crossbenchers to unite and support the Federal Government by delivering the nine votes required to pass this legislation prior to 27 March 2018.”