I AGREE with Ken Terry, of Bridport, (The Examiner, November 17). The rail trail people and the rail company/society should be working with each other to achieve a successful outcome for all parties.
A train stopping at Scottsdale on a daily basis bringing fresh customers to the rail trail people and the town of Scottsdale and surrounding areas, must be a winner.
As Mr Terry pointed out, the tourist potential in the area is huge, if correctly pursued. The added benefit of getting people to stay the second or third night in Launceston should also be taken into consideration.
Without cooperation from all parties problems will occur. Could you imagine ending a rail trail in the bush at Cold Water Creek Junction or ripping up the Bell Bay Line so the rail trail can end in Launceston? A knee-jerk reaction or poor long-term planning on this will cause problems.
Lester Willoughby, Dilston.
Private Health Insurance
I WHOLEHEARTEDLY support the Editorial (The Examiner, November 16) on private health insurance. It is my greatest expense after food, even more than electricity.
In Launceston if the matter is very difficult or complex you go to the Launceston General Hospital and there is no private emergency department. The federal Health Minister Susan Ley before the election said to reform it by introducing gold, silver and bronze schemes so everyone would know exactly what they were insured for. I guess it was found too hard.
Even though I have insurance, will I have to be treated as a public patient if I have anything really major as I won’t be able to afford the dreaded gap. When I broke my arm in Melbourne very badly was admitted as a private patient but had to be re-classified as a public patient to be admitted to the convalescent unit where I spent two weeks.
On return to Launceston received world class treatment in the public fracture clinic and public physiotherapy department at the LGH. Private health insurance must be reformed now, not put in the too hard basket. The future of the public sector depends on it, otherwise the public sector will be flooded and collapse.
Malcolm Scott, Newstead.
Jobs and growth
TO ACHIEVE the government’s mantra jobs and growth requires many things to occur concurrently.
To achieve jobs requires growth and vice versa. Unless jobs are rewarding and secure, growth will stagnate. The government regularly declare expanded new job figures. Almost all of these are casual or part-time offering as little as five hours weekly, which discourages security.
Low interest motivates excess credit card debt, which will bite Australia on the proverbial. Businesses today demand employees give 40-plus hours effort for 36 hours or less pay. Growth requires additional circulation of funds throughout the economy.
Workers on subsistence wages will contribute nothing to growth and less to enthusiasm. Retail industry employees award determines full time as 38 hours weekly. Take for example the agreement negotiated by “Target” who employ thousands of people.
Their agreement prevents employees obtaining liveable working standards, they stipulate employees are employed on 36 hours weekly, preventing full-time status, which exempts many benefits, being part-time employees. Target’s agreement also stipulates their hours can be reduced by up to 20 hours weekly without penalty.
What union negotiated and agreed such an EBA? Should the CFMEU be reduced to the level of the SDA, all future Australian workers can expect these conditions. Business needs employees as much as workers need business. Fairness reflecting effort for remuneration between the top and the bottom will provide growth and security for the enterprise and all it's staff and employees.