25 August 2014

Qld Labor Conference hailed as 'progressive & visionary'.

Queensland Labor's recent state conference, held at the Mercure Hotel, has been described as one of the most progressive and visionary for years. The landmark gathering of Labor Party faithful witnessed several key decisions made which will cement the ALP's bid to renew and rebuild itself in the Sunshine State.

After an extensive review and overhaul of its platform, the conference adopted a new set of policies covering a wide range of issues such as economic management, governance, health, education, transport, environment, justice, community services, industrial relations and arts and culture. Importantly, the platform also articulates Labor's core values, which underpin the entire policy document.

In opening the two-day conference, Party President Dick Williams outlined how the ALP had grown in just 30 months, with membership jumping from 5000 members to just over 9000 during that time. Dick also acknowledged the strong relationship that had been re-built between the ALP and the union movement since the devastating electoral defeat of 2012.

Members show their
support for Rainbow Labor
During the conference, attendees also heard key note speeches from Federal Deputy Opposition Leader, Tanya Plibersek and State Opposition Leader, Annastacia Palaszczuk.

Tanya spoke about the importance of education and health in the lives of everyday Australians, and the impact that the Abbott government was having on the most vulnerable in Australian society. "Labor values its history and is the only Party that builds for our future", she told conference attendees.

Annastacia addresses conference
Annastacia talked about the priorities for Labor as it heads toward the 2015 state election, telling the packed conference room of almost 500 attendees that State Labor would, for example, focus on jobs, restoring workers rights and workplace health and safety conditions, invest in education and help young people with mental illness.

"We will always stand up for the most vulnerable in our society", Annastacia told a cheering audience, who responded to her rousing speech with a warm, standing ovation.

The conference, however, will be remembered for a raft of important milestone decisions. These include:

- adopting a direct election model for the State Leader which includes an equal say for the Parliamentary Caucus, rank and file members and affiliated unions;
Annerley Branch delegates
to state conference
- giving branch members more of a say in candidate pre-selections;
- strengthening affirmative action requirements in support of women candidates;
- supporting an investigation into the legalisation of medicinal marijuana;
- a commitment to restoring the independence of Queensland's CMC;
- recommending to national conference that all Federal MP's support the Party's support for marriage equality;
- endorsing the adoption of refugee and asylum seeker policies that are based on fairness and compassion;
- confirming Labor's commitment for government assets to remain in public hands;
- re-iterating support for a two-state solution in the Middle East as the only way to end the long standing violence &
- committing to working with Federal Labor to save the Great Barrier Reef.

The conference has been hailed by many conference delegates as one of the best they had witnessed for years, with several believing that the Party had not only renewed itself but was now ready to take on the LNP at the next state election, due March 2015.

For more information about the policies and resolutions of the Queensland ALP state conference, please email info@annerleylabor.org. To find out about how you can help Labor in Queensland please visit www.fight4qld.org

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