Business Council chief executive Jennifer Westacott today addressed comments made by ACTU secretary Sally McManus on the ABC’s 7.30 last night.
“These grossly irresponsible comments can have dangerous real-world consequences, signalling to individuals around the country that it’s OK to take the law into their own hands,” Ms Westacott said.
“What kind of society will we have if everyone can simply choose to ignore any laws they don’t like?
“All citizens, and especially those of us who are community leaders, have a responsibility to abide by the law and set an example for others.
“How are do you explain this to your children? You don’t like this or that law, so you just ignore it?
“It’s especially disappointing when we’ve worked so hard with the ACTU to advance the national interest. Our society is best served by business and unions working together, and this episode will make that extremely difficult.
“Union leaders like Bob Hawke, Martin Ferguson and Simon Crean worked with business to achieve a more prosperous nation. Allowing the union movement to further devolve into a protest, wrecking movement will only add to the toxic, unproductive nature of debate in this country.
“Comparisons to the great civil rights struggles of the last century are breathtakingly ignorant and disrespectful to those who fought the institutionalised oppression and brutalisation of disenfranchised minorities. In a modern Australia, people seeking to change the law should avail themselves of the democratic process.”