Queensland building contractor Enco continues to block the CFMEU’s legitimate access to its sites. Union safety inspectors had arrived to investigate tip-offs about safety, which the company claimed was not possible on the racist grounds that its employees are too stupid to “manage their own safety” because “the Islander culture does not have self-preservation”. Despite a manager’s assertion that “The CFMEU are never coming on this site, it’s that simple”, the inspection eventually went ahead: “After union officials gained entry to Enco, Queensland government workplace inspectors issued eight enforcement notices, which require the business to make safety improvements, and issued one $3,600 fine for a failure to maintain a complete register of chemicals.” The dispute has been ongoing for months — trumped-up charges of trespass were thrown out because “police have taken the side of the business owner from the outset”, gave evidence that was “demonstrably untrue”, and ignored the union’s right of entry. The police were ordered to pay the union $85,000 in costs [$], which are “understood to be the largest awarded against the Queensland Police Force in the Magistrate’s Court”.
16 September 2019