Rebecca White needs to immediately take control of the Labor party, demonstrate leadership and consistency.
Ms White is exposed in relation to Mr O’Byrne’s inappropriate workplace behaviour, having previously stated that “the Labor party never condones that sort of behaviour and . . . any person across the community would condemn that type of behaviour, particularly in a workplace.”*
How can it be then, that Mr O’Byrne will return to the Parliament to sit with her next week? As the Leader, Ms White needs to demonstrate tenacity and immediately act, or face Tasmanians bringing into question the authenticity of her words.
Ms White also needs to explain how she can stand by her convictions regarding Labor party President Ben McGregor, given the precedent has now been set by the party’s clearing of Mr O’Byrne, putting clearly on the record the standard of behaviour the party is willing to accept.
While Ms White said “Labor needs to rebuild trust with the community,”**, she has failed at the first hurdle.
The complainant’s belief that the Labor report is a “sham” suggests a protection racket is being run by the party, and furthermore, it appears “the fact a second woman has also written to the party’s national secretary . . . urging rapid intervention,” has also been swept under the Labor rug.
Ms White needs to step up for these women and demonstrate that she is listening and take immediate action.
*8 July 2021 ABC online
**Aug 17 2021 Mercury online