Union spokesman labels new gang law as 'ridiculous'
NEW laws giving builders six months to cut ties with motorcycle gang members or face deregistration have been labelled "ridiculous" and "disgraceful" by a construction union spokesperson.
Construction Forestry Mining Energy Union of Queensland district president Stephen Smyth said the new legislation wasn't about eliminating criminal activity but instead about "suppressing people".
"There are already laws where they can lock people up and do certain things," he said.
"Next they'll be coming to your house to see who you're having dinner with."
OTHER TOP STORIES
He expected the laws to start affecting Mackay builders in the next six months and potentially "force" some out of the industry.
"A lot of Queenslanders and people will struggle with these laws, they're outrageous to be honest.
"You should be able to associate with anyone you want and if you do something wrong or illegal, then you get in trouble.
"These people have families and have got to have jobs.
"If they haven't been in trouble with the law then they shouldn't be getting in trouble for associating with somebody."
Mr Smyth questioned how far Premier Campbell Newman would take the anti-bikie legislation.
"It's easy to say it's anti-bikie but it affects every organisation or group of people. Unions are affected as well.
"I think these laws are outdated and something that would have been made at the turn of the century, but have no place in the 21st century.
"There's no justification."
Plumbers and electricians were also included in the Premier's list of industries forced to relinquish ties, or even friendships, with criminal gang members.
The new laws mandate that police will share intelligence with government regulators who licence the workers.