Counsel Assisting releases submissions on HSU

2 October 2015

The Royal Commission has today released the submissions of counsel assisting in respect of former Health Services Union officials Kathy Jackson and Craig Thomson.

The submissions set out in detail a "sorry history of misappropriation and deceit" in which some members of senior management operated "with a sense of complete entitlement in respect of the use of members' money".

In overview, the submissions address:

  • the misappropriation of funds by Kathy Jackson including in respect of the National Health Development Account and the misuse of union credit cards in relation to travel and other expenses;
  • the use by Ms Jackson of members' money in slush funds designed to avoid disclosure and reporting obligations;
  • the activities of Craig Thomson while National Secretary of the HSU, including misappropriation of funds by him for his personal benefit including by advancing his Federal election campaign; and
  • questions of governance, including how conduct of this kind came to occur, how it was carried on for so long and so brazenly, and how it might more effectively be prevented in future.

The submissions note that the Victorian Police Task Force, operating independently but in support of the Commission, is presently undertaking a criminal investigation into Ms Jackson's activities while at the union.

Affected parties have until 16 October 2015 to lodge submissions in reply.

The Commissioner will deliver his Final Report to the Governor General by 31 December 2015.

The documents can be found on the HSU Case Study Submissions page.