Katter joins TWU defence of RSRT

The independent politician says law-abiding transporters are being placed at risk by greedy customers and outlaw operators

Katter joins TWU defence of RSRT
Bob Katter believes the RSRT is a necessary body.


Bob Katter has signed on to the Transport Workers Union (TWU) campaign to maintain the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT).

The federal member for the far north Queensland seat of Kennedy says the RSRT is a necessary body, set up to ensure truck drivers are paid and treated fairly by employers and other industry stakeholders.

"These blokes are being undermined and white-anted by what I call ‘greedy outlaws’, who are quite prepared to break all the rules so they can get an edge in their contracts, of course at the expense of their workers," Katter tells a TWU press conference today.

He says most transport companies – particularly in North Queensland – treat their staff well, but can come under competitive pressure by the industry’s less-reputable players.

"My experience of the trucking companies is that they’re damn good guys and we can’t let them be undermined by the greed of big supermarket chains, nor by the greed of ‘greedy outlaws’ who really don’t care about the safety of their men," he adds.

Katter also makes special mention of the TWU itself, saying the union was fighting "tenaciously" for its members.

"Congratulations to [national secretary] Tony Sheldon, whose Transport Workers’ Union has fought very hard for their [members] and done a very good job for the people in their industry."

Sheldon says today marks a year since the completion of a "bogus" review of the RSRT. He called on the government to lift the uncertainty surrounding the "vital" industry watchdog.

"Tony Abbott and Eric Abetz, the minister in charge, need to call off this attack on the road safety tribunal," he says.

"Our members and their families know what pressure on truck drivers can result in and it is ugly, horrific and sad – it is families left without loved ones and it is entire communities torn apart by horror crashes."

Katter joins the Greens, independent senators John Madigan and Nick Xenophon and Motoring Enthusiasts Party senator Ricky Muir in their support for the RSRT.

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