Black wins in ATA owner-driver race

Victor outlines the cases he will prosecute and demands fair go, while McMillan is returned in small-fleet position

March 10, 2011

Frank Black has been elected as the owner-driver representative on the general council of the trucking industry’s peak body, the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) revealed late yesterday.

Black, from Coopers Plains in Queensland, previously held the owner-driver position from 2003 to 2009.

Black says owner-drivers and their families were an important sector of the transport industry, working long hours and spending long periods away from each other just to make ends meet but their burden was heightened unnecessarily.

And he put up a stirring defence in his acceptance remarks of those he represents.

"The different interpretations of laws between the states, low rates of pay, log book fines and demerit points for minor offences, rising costs and the lack of decent rest facilities need to be addressed now," Black says.

"Governments and associations need to understand and act on these issues.

"Everyone is constantly calling for safety: governments, law enforcers, associations, and the general public.

"Well, we also want safety for ourselves, our families and everyone else, so we need a structure where we can make a living, look after our families and stop whipping the hell out of us with stupidity and unworkable laws and conditions.

"Over the last few years, I have been involved with others in the safe rates campaign, which has seen the Federal Government agree that a safe rates regime with minimum rates of pay must be legislated for owner-drivers and drivers.

"We must now pursue this and the other issues I have mentioned vigilantly until they are implemented.

"I will not rest until governments pass laws to keep us and others safe on the roads and give us and our families a fair go."

Black will take up his position at the ATA’s annual general meeting on March 30.

Meanwhile, industry stalwart Doug McMillan of Wodonga, Victoria, was re-elected unopposed as the small fleet (2-5 trucks) representative on the ATA Council.

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