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Rinehart a threat to Australian egalitarianism: Bandt

Greens Deputy Leader, Adam Bandt, has hit back at claims from Gina Rinehart that Australia needs a dose of Thatcherism.

"Gina Rinehart is a threat to Australian egalitarianism," said Mr Bandt.

"Gina Rinehart is full of suggestions about how to balance the budget, but none of them involve her paying a fairer share of tax and all of them involve getting the rest of us to pay more."

"If Gina Rinehart and Tony Abbott get their way, Australia will have a US-style health system where the quality of your healthcare depends on the size of your wallet."

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Productivity Commission set to revive WorkChoices corpse: Bandt

Greens Deputy Leader and workplace spokesperson, Adam Bandt MP, says leaked terms of reference for the Productivity Commission review of the Fair Work Act reveals the government's real agenda on workplace laws.

Reports in Fairfax media today suggest scrapping of penalty rates and other workplace conditions are in the government's sights.

"Tony Abbott claimed to have buried WorkChoices, but the Productivity Commission is his Dr Frankenstein, charged with reviving the WorkChoices corpse," said Mr Bandt.

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Greens will oppose Abbott’s destruction of Qantas

The Australian Greens have said they will strongly oppose Tony Abbott's plan to remove the protections in the Qantas Sale Act. They called on Labor to not join Tony Abbott in allowing any increase in foreign ownership of Qantas.

Greens Deputy Leader Adam Bandt MP said today:

"It's disappointing Treasurer Joe Hockey got rolled in Cabinet, because Tony Abbott is out to kill Qantas as our national carrier."

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Tony Abbott needs to take on Qantas

Responding to massive job cuts announced by Qantas today, Australian Greens Deputy Leader and Member for Melbourne Adam Bandt said:

"Today we've seen Alan Joyce announce he will sack more than 5,000 Qantas employees, almost one sixth of the total workforce, in response to Tony Abbott's demands that he cut costs.

"Unless the government secures an agreement to protect local jobs, any government support could just underwrite the offshoring of jobs."

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Greens introduce bill for employment quotas in the Public Service

Greens Deputy Leader and workplace spokesperson, Adam Bandt MP, will introduce a private members' bill on Monday to require the public service to double its employment of people with disabilities and people from non-english speaking backgrounds over the next five years.

The Public Service Amendment (Employment for all of us) Bill 2014 will require the Public Service Commissioner to direct the APS to implement its commitment to diversity through setting employment targets.

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Abetz targeting penalty rates: Bandt

Greens Deputy Leader Adam Bandt MP says the government is revealing its hand on industrial relations.

Mr Bandt says it is becoming clearer by the day that the new industrial relations laws to be introduced into Parliament next week aim to undermine penalty rates and could reintroduce the equivalent of AWAs.

"Eric Abetz has revealed the government's hand on penalty rates", Mr Bandt said.

"The Minister has admitted that individual flexibility agreements can be used to trade off penalty rates."

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Greens back Qantas support but with strings

Greens Leader Christine Milne and Greens Deputy Leader Adam Bandt have called on the government to support a loan guarantee or government investment in Qantas, but only if there are guarantees on protecting local jobs and conditions.

"There are strong economic and security reasons for Australia keeping a national carrier," Senator Milne said.

"Tony Abbott should not let more Australian jobs go to the wall. He needs to act.

"Australia is facing a jobs crisis, particularly in the south-east of the country. Qantas is a big employer and needs to stay in Australia."

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Greens call for construction-led south-east stimulus package

Victoria, South Australia & NSW need an economic stimulus package to create jobs and transition to a clean economy, Greens Deputy Leader and industry spokesperson, Adam Bandt, said today.

Mr Bandt today released ‘Saving south-east Australia', a fully-funded plan to build 77,500 new houses in south-eastern Australia, fast-track high-speed rail, provide tax relief to small business and manufacturing and boost research and innovation spending.

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Royal Commission a one-sided Abbott re-election weapon: Bandt

Tony Abbott wants to use a one-sided Royal Commission as a key weapon in his plan for re-election, Greens Deputy Leader and workplace relations spokesperson Adam Bandt said today.

"Tony Abbott is laying the groundwork for an attack on wages and conditions," said Mr Bandt.

"Australia needs an even-handed corruption fighter, not the ideological witch-hunt Tony Abbott has just delivered."

"Construction companies allegedly made illegal payments to Saddam Hussein's regime, but the Royal Commission's terms of reference turns a blind eye to them."

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Abbott union 'lynch mob' mentality will backfire: Bandt

Tony Abbott's attempt to generate a lynch mob mentality towards unions will backfire, Greens Deputy Leader and workplace relations spokesperson, Adam Bandt, said today.

The government is set to announce a Royal Commission into the union movement, but the Greens say any claims of wrongdoing should be investigated by police.

"Tony Abbott's long planned lynching of the union movement will backfire," Mr Bandt said today.

"The Australian people will see it for what it is, the first step in the government's assault on wages and conditions."

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