Opinion: A united industry is a strong industry

By: Ben Maguire


Association and its members key to cohesion in face of challenges

Opinion: A united industry is a strong industry
Ben Maguire

 

"We’re all in this together" has been the key phrase of 2020, as Australia suffered together during the devastating bushfires, before Covid-19 swept across the globe.

While it may seem cliché, the sentiment rings true.

The bushfires did not discriminate and nor has Covid-19, impacting all Australians, all industries and all workers.

While the coronavirus has brought many businesses and communities to a standstill, trucking has had to press on, ensuring the delivery of the essential goods that we rely on like food, fuel and medicine.

In a time of immense stress and confusion the trucking industry has come together, united and supportive of those on the frontline – drivers, warehouse staff, schedulers, mechanics and support staff.

Together with our members we have led the charge, working tirelessly with governments, regulators and health professionals to ensure industry members receive the support Covid need and deserve.


Read Maguire on the industry's search for the right kind of reforms, here


Like the Queensland Trucking Association, who has developed educational Covid-safe infographics and delivered Covid safety training for truck drivers, while the Western Roads Federation and Northern Territory Road Transport Association are leading a WA Supply Chain Covid Response Group.

As Victoria faces strict lockdowns, the Victorian Transport Association has been keeping industry informed and up to date with the latest requirements, while the South Australian Road Transport Association has been advocating for appropriate Covid-19 testing, and Road Freight NSW has been providing members with best-practice advice and support.

Each of our members have keep their members informed and stood up for industry in making sure operators have the support needed to get the job done. Their efforts have been incredible – representing the best interests of our industry as we face the coronavirus and the challenges that come with it.

As my time with the Australian Trucking Association comes to an end, I reflect on the strength of our united membership front and take pride in its success, as well as the many other achievements we have had over the last four years.

I have fostered strong relationships with both sides of politics and built and led a team that has delivered so much for our industry - the best association secretariat team in Canberra.

In leading this team, I have seen our industry events increase their growth and relevance, and the voice of industry be heard loud and clear through our massive media reach.

I have seen TruckSafe recognised for its high standards and provided our sponsors and partners with immense value and industry recognition through innovative and meaningful initiatives.

Being able to ‘walk the talk’ and travel across Australia to meet the men and women who own, and drive trucks has been an absolute highlight and a privilege.

While I enjoy the cut and thrust of donning a suit and representing the industry in the media or with our federal politicians, what really inspires me is the real feeling of being with people who are taking action every day to solve problems and keep our nation moving.

Our industry is filled with thousands of amazing people whose passion and resilience are something to be admired. Although dealt with challenges, our industry does not see these as a barrier to success, but rather a motivator to strive for greatness.

So I wish you all farewell, thank you for your support and remember that as a collective, so much can be achieved.

Ben Maguire is the outgoing CEO of the ATA

 

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