ACTU to decide on HSU axing
THE Australian Council of Trade Unions will hold an urgent executive meeting on Thursday to decide whether it severs ties with the controversy-plagued Health Services Union.
Members of the ACTU's senior leadership met this morning to discuss suspending the HSU after Fair Work Australia on Tuesday referred its 1100-page investigation report into the alleged mismanagement of HSU finances to the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions.
FWA's investigation spanned three years and identified 181 alleged breaches of workplace legislation by three former or current union officials and one person who was not an official.
Embattled Labor MP Craig Thomson was secretary of the HSU at the time, but was not named in the two-page FWA statement released on Tuesday. Mr Thomson maintains his innocence.
ACTU president Ged Kearney described as "difficult" the decision to consider suspending the HSU.
"The ongoing allegations and investigations into the HSU have of course caused great concern for the ACTU, our members and ... the broader community," Ms Kearney said.
Ms Kearney said the ACTU supported FWA's referral of the report to the DPP.
"It is the view of the senior ACTU leadership that the governance issues within the HSU and the ongoing allegations hanging over certain individuals in the HSU are of such a serious nature that the broader union movement is forced to ... send a very strong message ... that we will take strong action," Ms Kearney said.