A former Queensland Industrial Relations commissioner is to head Australia’s first independent panel to advise on ethical procurement for government suppliers, driving genuine, secure ongoing jobs with fair pay and safe working conditions for Queenslanders.
Procurement Minister Mick de Brenni said the Queensland Government was committed to supporting ethically, socially and environmentally responsible Queensland businesses and to keeping the economy moving by backing small business.
“This as an historic moment and a first for Australia,” Mr de Brenni said.
"The panel’s role in providing government agencies with advice regarding procurement, contracts, audits and investigations will drive real change in Queensland.
“I’m also pleased to welcome Mr John Thompson who will chair the independent Tripartite Procurement Advisory Panel, forming part of the Buy Queensland approach to procurement.
“Mr Thompson has more than 20 years as a QIRC commissioner with extensive experience in both state and federal jurisdictions,” he said.
Minister de Brenni said that Mr Thompson has more than 40 years of experience in industrial relations, work health and safety and training and apprenticeships.
“Mr Thompson led the review into the Queensland Industrial Relations Act 2016 and this report was released on 6 February 2022 by Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.
“I can’t think of anyone better to head this new panel, which is an essential part of Queensland’s procurement approach and the state’s economic recovery plan,” he said.
Mr de Brenni said the panel will provide robust, independent and expert advice and recommendations to the directors-general and CEOs of procuring agencies.
“The Buy Queensland approach to procurement was introduced in 2017 to support local business and keep Queensland taxpayers’ money in Queensland as much as possible,” Minister de Brenni said.
“The Ethical Supplier Mandate and the Ethical Supplier Threshold are integral parts of this approach after being introduced in 2019 and widened on 1 February 2022.
“When we introduced these reforms, we promised to establish this panel to provide robust, independent and expert advice and recommendations on the application of penalties under the Mandate.
“As well, it will also provide government agencies with broader advice regarding procurement, contact, audit and investigation processes and systems,” he said.
Deputy chair is Ms Jennifer McVeigh, a solicitor of 37 years standing who is also a member of QCAT, Queensland Fire and Rescue Services Panel of Referees and the Board of Architects of Queensland.
Ms McVeigh is a partner in a construction law firm and also an Associate Professor at QUT.
The Ethical Supplier Threshold and Mandate policies that support the Buy Queensland approach ensure:
Other board members are: