Commission of audit report may send the unions to war

UNIONS may only have been given the tiniest morsel of the Queensland Government's 1000-page Commission of Audit report, but those first 28 pages will likely send them to war.

Only the report's executive summary was released on Friday, calling for the privatisation of power, ports and potentially community services.

The head of Together union - which represents public servants - had sharp words to say about the release, put together by a group headed by former Federal Treasurer Peter Costello.

Secretary Alex Scott said if acted upon, it would "destroy the fabric of Queensland society" as it would put company profits above services.

But his venom was likely to be just an opening swipe, as unions across the state prepare to strategise attacks on the government's plans.

The executive of the Queensland Council of Unions will meet on Monday morning to build on its "Not4Sale" campaign against asset sales.

The QCU will prove a troublesome opponent, backed by 35 unions and 350,000 Queensland members.

Together union too will meet with members at lunchtime on Monday to discuss whether to have its own stand-alone campaign to run in parallel.

Treasurer Tim Nicholls seemed unmoved by likely union action when he launched the report's executive summary, saying unions were living in the past as they benefit from the largesse of members inside government-owned corporations.

Mr Nicholls and Mr Costello said assets needed to be privatised if Queensland was ever to regain a top credit rating.



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