With Opposition Leader Bill Shorten in Perth for the first federal election leaders' debate to be held in Western Australia, he took the opportunity to visit Civmec’s Henderson facility and meet and address workers.
Joined by Premier Mark McGowan, Mr Shorten chatted with workers as he toured the facility.
Premier McGowan welcomed Mr Shorten, and in his address to the assembled group, the Premier spoke highly of the skill and dedication of the workforce, who work together as a solid team at Civmec. He referenced the excellent work achieved by the company in the delivery of the steel for the iconic Optus Stadium. He then hailed even more praise on the Civmec workforce who worked tirelessly when called upon to deliver the Matagarup Bridge for the State. He highlighted that this was a testament to the capabilities of the highly skilled and dedicated men and women at Civmec who were able to achieve, to the highest quality, in approximately five months, an extremely challenging delivery timeframe. He referenced the fact that the contract was originally awarded to an overseas fabrication company, but was brought back to Western Australia to be built at Civmec by his government when the overseas fabricator was unable to complete the job after working on it for almost two years.
Civmec supplied and erected key elements of the Optus Stadium structure, including the structural frame and roof trusses and various precast elements, and then as a member of the Swan River Bridge Alliance, Civmec’s significant specialist expertise was employed to undertake the steel fabrication, painting and transportation of the arches and decks for the Matagarup Bridge.
The Premier then went on to talk about how confident he was that these great skills will be utilised at the company’s new shipbuilding facility. The mega-structure, currently under construction, will rival the world’s best facilities, and will be the Western Australian location for the construction of the Offshore Patrol Vessels for the Royal Australian Navy, providing long-term employment for Civmec’s workforce. He expressed with pride that this is what Western Australia and Civmec can produce.
Mr Shorten and Premier McGowan spent considerable time walking the facility and meeting workers one-on-one, before addressing the 700-strong group. In his address, Mr Shorten outlined his plans for Australia’s future should he be elected as the next Prime Minister, focusing on creating Australian jobs and how he wanted all Australians to have a ‘fair go’. He spoke about the importance of creating jobs and improving conditions for all Australians. He spent a lot of time engaging with the workforce, paying particular interest to the 30 or so apprentices who assembled to meet and greet the Opposition Leader leading up to the Federal Election on May 18.