Gold Coast Commonwealth Games 2018

Comm Games spurs Indigenous business growth and creates jobs

THE Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games continue to boost growth and support jobs for many Queensland Indigenous businesses, according to new data released today.

Commonwealth Games Minister Kate Jones said Queensland Indigenous businesses secured more than $14 million in contracts and revenue from the Games, enabling many to create jobs and grow their business.

“Many of these Indigenous businesses have been able to maintain the momentum from the Games and have continued to prosper,” she said.

“We delivered the first ever Reconciliation Action Plan for a Commonwealth Games because we were determined to ensuring the Traditional Owners of our state benefitted from the biggest event in Queensland’s history.

“Supporting Indigenous businesses was one of the key aims of the GC2018 Reconciliation Action Plan – to provide opportunities for procurement, employment and training.”

Snap Underwood Owner Karen Seage was awarded several printing contracts associated with the Games which enabled her to employ two new staff members and to transfer two casual employees to full-time apprenticeships.

Karen, a Nunagal woman from Minjerribah on North Stradbroke Island, said being able to offer full-time apprenticeships had been life-changing for the two employees and gave them long-term financial security.

“Our business has really expanded since the Games, and we have had increased Tier 1 business, and much more business from Government departments,” she said.

“I’ve been really thrilled that since the Games, our sales figures have stayed at the same high level as they were during the Games. The work has continued to steadily come in,” she said.

Since the Games, Snap Underwood has opened an Indigenous design studio which has provided employment for an additional staff member and the appointment of a female Indigenous artist-in-residence.

Another Queensland Indigenous business CivtecQld increased their staff numbers since securing a battery supply contract for the Commonwealth Games.

CivtecQld founder and Managing Director Ricky Talbott said the 100 per cent Aboriginal owned and operated company expanded their Corporate Services Team since the Games.

“Winning the tender enabled CivtecQld to recruit for two significant roles – a Commercial Manager and an Office Manager which has put the company in good stead for other major contracts,” Mr Talbott said.

“The process of tendering for the battery supply contract provided an invaluable first-hand insight and understanding of the Queensland Government tendering process.”

Through the Games, CivtecQld established networks and partnerships with other businesses which provided leads for work in Townsville, Gunnedah and South East Queensland.

Pacific Facilities Services (PFS) has been involved in the Commonwealth Games since March 2015 when they were engaged for cleaning services during the Parklands construction.

More than 6000 hours of Indigenous training and employment were completed during the construction period. They employed up to 12 full-time site cleaners during this phase.

General Manager Stephen Driscoll said the company continued their involvement, working alongside JLL and GOLDOC as part of the Athletes Village facilities management team before and during the Games.

“The facilities management and cleaning work has continued to flow after the Games with Pacific Facilities Services engaged through the refurbishment work,” Mr Driscoll said.

“The Commonwealth Games work allowed us to offer ongoing employment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Staff member Josh Ah Wing is just one example of how opportunities continue to open up.

“Josh started with PFS in 2015 as a cleaner and was promoted to a supervisor of 10 people at the peak period of construction. Almost 12 months after the Games, Josh has secured permanent employment still working at the precinct,” he said.

Stephen said since the Games, the company has secured government and major project contracts including interstate projects.

Commonwealth Games Minister Kate Jones said more than 800 employment and training opportunities were created because of GC2018.

Far North Queensland business, Mossman Gorge Centre and Voyages provided tourism and hospitality internships for 13 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples through the Employment Pathway Program.

The program aimed to equip participants with the knowledge and skills to work in the industry after the four-week program. Nine participants successfully gained employment following the Games.

Hutchinson Builders partnered with Verifact to train Indigenous participants in traffic control and provide employment to participants who completed the program.

Six Indigenous people qualified and have continued employment in the industry. Since the Games, Verifact has promoted the initiative across Queensland and have committed to filling 55 position.

Workplace Harassment

New push to end workplace sex harassment

The scourge of sexual harassment in Australian workplaces is being tackled head-on, with more than 100 organisations pushing a new plan to stamp out the behaviour.

Unions, researchers, peak bodies, health professionals and lawyers are among those to sign up to the initiative.

They’re calling on federal and state governments to implement a five-point plan, headlined by calls for an overhaul of the complaints process.

It comes in response to alarming rates of sexual harassment in Australia, particularly for women, with 85 per cent having experienced it.

Australian Council of Trade Unions president Michele O’Neil said the current complaints process was failing people sexually harassed at work.

“It puts people in a position where taking action means launching a court case as an individual against a corporate respondent,” she told AAP.

“This is expensive and protracted, it’s invasive and it often means re-victimising a person who has experienced sexual harassment.”

The ACTU is pushing for harassment to be brought under the Fair Work Act, allowing people to pursue complaints through the workplace umpire.

The plan is also focused on prevention efforts aimed at addressing the drivers of harassment.

It includes stronger legal duties for employers to take proactive steps to prevent harassment, creating more accessible reporting tools and ensuring advocacy is available.

Ms O’Neil knows first-hand what it’s like to be sexually harassed at work, having encountered it at 14 while working in her first job as a waitress.

“My supervisor would systematically push me into the storeroom and cool room and try and touch and kiss me,” she said.

“I was young and in my first job and it was difficult to talk about.”

After the older women she worked with got a union delegate involved, the behaviour was stopped and the supervisor disciplined.

Ms O’Neil first revealed the incident when elected ACTU president in July, in a bid to help others.

“I wanted people who are being harassed to know that they’re not alone and what’s being done to them is not okay, and that it can be stopped,” she said.

© AAP 2019

Council to call for expressions of interest for Gold Coast ferry service

Council has voted unanimously in favour of seeking expressions of interest for a Gold Coast ferry trial which should be underway by December.

Council officers recommended an initial two-year trial covering five stops – Seaworld, Marina Mirage, Southport, Surfers Paradise and HOTA at Evandale.

But the trial won’t come cheaply, with Council needing to spend around one million dollars upgrading facilities at the proposed stops.

Council will pay for the entire cost of the stop at HOTA and will pay 50 per cent of the cost for the stops at Appel Park in Surfers and at Southport Pier with the Gold Coast Waterways Authority to pick up the rest of the tab.

The owners of Seaworld and Marine Mirage will pay for the upgrades at their respective jetties.

Today’s full council meeting heard up to 700 passengers a day are expected to use the ferry service during the initial stages of the trial.

Speed limits on the route won’t be increased but Council has left open the door to applying to the State Government for an increase at a later date.

It’s now expected expressions of interest will be called next month with a contract likely to be awarded by July.

The trial is intended to get underway at the start of December.

While ratepayers will need to dig deep to upgrade stops, the cost of running the service during the trial will be left up to the operator, including the cost of acquiring vessels.

Mayor Tom Tate told the meeting that the Gold Coast is ready for a trial.

Veteran Southport Councillor Dawn Crichlow spoke in favour of taking the trial to the next step, but would have liked to have seen more stops.

“I’m very happy about going to expressions of interest but that’s the only thing that concerns me – I’d like to see it all the way up and down the Gold Coast,” Councillor Chrichlow said.

“This is what the people like about the Gold Coast they like the water and this is a win-win for everybody,this should be unanimously supported.”


GC icon Carlotta showcased on new mural at HOTA

Gold Coast icon, fearless cabaret dancer and LGBTQ activist, Carlotta, was the inspiration behind a brand new mural now on show at HOTA, Home of the Arts.

Local artist Courtenay McCue was commissioned by HOTA to create the vibrant new mural on the Duchamp Wall.

The artwork, which is known as The Queen of the Cross, offers a chronicle of Carlotta’s life and emulates an issue of Life magazine.

To create the work, Courtenay used a her signature style of layered street art treatments, including stencils, pastes ups, and hand-written messages.

In addition to creating the mural, Courtenay will also host a workshop for kids at HOTA – ArtLab: Stencil Stars on 9 March. During the workshop, young artists will create a layered artwork using spray paint and stencils under her direction.

The mural at HOTA is Courtenay’s biggest work to date. Locals may have seen her work at the S.O.F.A Gallery in Currumbin and she also created a mural for the Level Up Gallery in Coolangatta last year.

Stockpile of stolen goods found in Gold Coast home

POLICE have uncovered a large stash of stolen jewellery, handbags, watches and collector coins at a house in Pacific Pines.

Officers from the Coomera Criminal Investigation Branch raided the Pacific Pines home on Tuesday.

During the search, officers recovered a large amount of stolen property, including jewellery, sunglasses, carry bags, handbags, coin collections, household electrical items and other personal effects.

(Source: Queensland Police)

(Source: Queensland Police)

Two people were arrested and charged with numerous break and enter offences.

At this stage, police have been unable to identify the rightful owners of the stolen property.

If you have been the victim of a break and enter recently and recognise any property in the attached photographs please contact police.

To view the complete gallery of recovered property, click here.

If you have information for Police, please contact Policelink on 131 444 or provide information using their online form 24 hours per day.

You can also report information about crime anonymously to Crime Stoppers by calling 1800 333 000 or via 24 hours per day. Crime Stoppers is a registered charity and community volunteer organisation.