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Bill Shorten

  • Australian politician
  • Born May 12, 1967

William Richard Shorten (born 12 May 1967) is an Australian politician who served as Leader of the Opposition and leader of the Australian Labor Party (ALP) from 2013 to 2019. Shorten was first elected as the member of parliament (MP) for Maribyrnong in 2007, and was a cabinet minister in the Gillard and Rudd Governments from 2010 to 2013. Born in Melbourne, Shorten studied law at Monash University. He worked in politics and in law before becoming an organiser with the Australian Workers' Union (AWU) in 1994.


When I entered federal parliament at the end of 2007, I was appointed parliamentary secretary for disabilities.




Labor should not be about creating monuments on hills or statues in parks. Labor's monuments and statues are when a young person can find a job, when a person with disability can get access to the ordinary life that others take for granted.




Labor is at its best when we are the party of ideas and action - ideas that empower the powerless and actions that build a better Australia for the long term.




Workplace relations is about getting the best out of people. An argument which says that the only way we can compete with other nations in the world is engaging in a race to the bottom in terms of pay rates, penalty rates, protections on rosters, getting rid of family friendly provisions - that is not Australia's future.




We commissioned an independent statutory economic body - the Productivity Commission - to review the possibility of funding a disability scheme. The commission returned with a view that it could. Then it becomes an issue of national will.




Productivity is driven at the enterprise level. Better wages, better performing workplaces, are driven at the workplace level.




Trusting people to pursue their own futures invariably provides better outcomes. Money goes where it is needed, rather than being absorbed by administration costs.




Labor must work harder to attract and retain members. The party should be cheaper to join with discounted rates available for union members as well as for students, pensioners, and people out of work.




To the best of my knowledge, when I became national secretary and, indeed, Victorian secretary, the - my predecessors in the union had detected wrong activities, activities which aren't in the best traditions of the AWU or, indeed, trade unionism.




If I am elected leader, my shadow opposition team will actively incorporate the policy contributions of all our members by instituting policy action committees as recommend by the 2010 National Review.




I want to build a Big Labor party. A party of big ideas. A party which is deeply connected to the community. A party which reflects our diverse nation.



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