Clubs ACT takes issue with Labor’s small clubs policy

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Clubs ACT CEO Gwyn Rees say yesterday’s announcement by ACT Labor regarding community clubs is a poorly thought through measure, which does not address the major threats to the future of local Clubs in the ACT.

“It’s simply a desperate attempt to get Labor and the Greens through the coming election without directly addressing the major issues affecting clubs,” Gwyn said.

“ClubsACT has been trying to work with ACT Labor on many of these reforms, which they have blatantly ignored and rejected for almost four years now.

“We appreciate regulations on the clubs industry finally seem to be in focus because we have worked tirelessly to bring this to the public agenda but it needs to be pointed out – Labor is not working with the industry, they are talking to a small handful of labor-party aligned and union driven clubs.

“Consequently, the threat to the future of community clubs in the ACT remains.

“ClubsACT are calling on the Labor Government to withdraw yesterday’s ill-considered announcement and to seriously commit to measures, which will support the future of community clubs in the ACT.

“Despite gaining bi-partisan support for 46 recommendations at last year’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Inquiry, less than half have been accepted by the Government and those ultimately selected provide little relief for Clubs.

The PAC Inquiry last year is just one of many examples where ACT Labor had the opportunity to show support and work with the clubs industry constructively but failed to do so.

“A $10,000 grant won’t go far enough to cover the record rate rises these small to medium sized clubs have experienced over the last four years, it’s almost insulting.”

ClubsACT is holding a public rally at the Belconnen Raiders Club oval in Holt tomorrow morning from 10:30am with hundreds expected to attend to show support.

“Chief Minister, Andrew Barr, was invited to speak at the event but has rejected the invitation. People shouldn’t believe ACT Labor given their broken promises in recent times, why should the club industry believe them again? Will it be just another broken promise?” Gwyn said.

“We won’t until their support is for more than just a few clubs and until it is publicly proven, not just an empty promise,” he concluded.

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