Christmas presents, goods threatened by Union strike

Liberal Party Victoria

Christmas presents and critical consumer goods are set to be left stranded on the dock by Union action in the lead up to Christmas.

In the lead up to Christmas, critical consumer items needed by Victorians will be left stranded on the dock, thanks to unnecessary union stop work action and a lack of action from the Andrews Labor Government.

The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) is planning an aggressive round of strikes at the Patrick Terminal facility at the Port of Melbourne, during the peak pre-Christmas freight period, as part of an ongoing enterprise bargaining agreement negotiation.

As Victoria struggles through its latest lockdown and the Andrews Labor Government blaming anyone but themselves, the supply chain is under increasing pressure to ensure goods can get to where they need to be.

The union’s latest reckless action risks Victorians not being able to access critical goods. Commenting on the latest action, Shipping Australia stated,”Given the central and vital importance of freight, shipping and ports, it is fair to say union-led disruption to their activities will adversely impact the lives of everyday Australians. It can really cause a lot of problems to large numbers of people who are not involved in the dispute. It’s a mess.”

It’s time for Labor’s Industrial Relations Minister Tim Pallas and Ports and Freight Minister Melissa Horne to step up and say enough is enough.

Taking this strike action now flies in the face of the way all Victorians are pulling together to get through the pandemic. The Andrews Labor Government needs to stand up to its union mates, be on the side of Victorians and say this isn’t on.

As stated by Shadow Minister for Ports and Freight, Roma Britnell:

“Victorians shouldn’t be held to ransom by the unions and the Andrews Labor Government needs to stand up and call this out.

“The MUA have no regard for everyday Victorians who are doing it tough. The consequence of their actions will just get passed further and further down the chain and the ones holding the booby prize at the end will be Victorian consumers.

“As Victoria comes out yet another lockdown, we should be doing everything we can to try and return to some level of normality and assist recovery. But the MUA is intent on causing even more havoc and the Andrews Labor Government is completely silent.”

As stated by Shadow Minister for Industrial Relations and Trade, Nick Wakeling MP:

“With all of the COVID-19 related pressures on our supply chains, industrial action at our ports is the last thing the Victorian economy and Victorians need right now.

“All Victorians are doing it tough. This proposed action is yet more evidence of how out-of-touch some unions have become.

“This action threatens to jeopardise our economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It is critical that the Andrews Labor Government does not hide from its obligation to sort out these issues and to safeguard our supply chains.”

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