Public sector workers back Labor’s plan for a National Integrity Commission

The CPSU has thrown its support behind the Labor Party’s plan to establish a National Integrity Commission to deal with corruption within the Federal Government and Commonwealth agencies.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has today announced a National Integrity Commission will be established within 12 months of Labor winning Government.

The commission would be an independent statutory body with the powers of a Royal Commission to investigate serious and systemic corruption by Commonwealth parliamentarians or their staff, public sector workers, statutory office holders, the Commonwealth judiciary and the Governor-General.

CPSU National Secretary Nadine Flood said: “We strongly support the creation of a National Integrity Commission, and are satisfied with the model the ALP has outlined to deal with corruption involving the Federal Government, parliamentarians or the public sector.”

“Our union has a long history of supporting measures which give our community trust in our democratic institutions and the public service. The CPSU’s key workplace leaders voted unanimously to back the need for a Commonwealth anti-corruption body at a meeting of the union’s Governing Council late last year. The model advocated was very similar to what is now being proposed by the ALP.”

“Numerous surveys and polls have shown the strong community support for an integrity commission. Labor’s announcement today is an important step, and it would improve the Parliament’s standing with the public if there was now to be bipartisan agreement to its implementation.”

“Public sector workers recognise the importance of restoring public confidence in Commonwealth institutions and the people who provide them, as well as in the Government itself and all parliamentarians.”

“Our members know that the overwhelming majority of people working in the public sector work with absolute integrity to provide services that are vital to the Australian people. Weeding out a few bad apples will be good for their colleagues just as much as the general public.”

“The most recent survey by the Australian Public Service Commission found a rising number of public sector workers are witnessing corrupt conduct such as nepotism and cronyism. Our members believe this trend is linked to the ever-growing and often questionable use of consultants, contractors and labour hire arrangements in agencies, making this a key issue they’d like to see the Commission address.”