The heads of the New South Wales, Queensland and Victorian industry associations have formalised their commitment to work together to promote a consistent voice on issues and offer advice for the benefit of their members.
The Waste and Contractors & Recyclers Association of NSW (WCRA), Waste and Recycling Industry Association Queensland (WRIQ) and Victorian Waste Management Association (VWMA) have signed a Heads of Agreement to collaborate together to “promote, protect and advance the interests of their members”.
WRIQ CEO Rick Ralph emphasised how the three associations collectively represent more than 400 businesses operating across the industry. The agreement allows them a strong, central voice with which to go to federal government on national matters and state governments on state-centric concerns.
“It is critical in terms of our economic and business footprint, and in the interests of the many thousands of our members’ employees, that we are aligned with our policy and regulation objectives, but that each separate association remains focused on its state-based member needs as well as advancing the sector’s collective influence at all levels of government and with all our stakeholders,” he said.
Mr Ralph, who also heads up the Northern Territory association, WRINT, confirmed it will also sign the agreement following its 2016 AGM next month.
The announcement from the three associations said the agreement would help them better respond to matters that commonly affect them, and to work across governments to improve outcomes for a sustainable, profitable waste and recycling industry.
“The intent of the joint approach between the three state associations is to ensure our members’ voices are heard consistently across all state governments,” said Tony Khoury, Executive Director of WCRA.
“Our larger members operate nationally and, obviously, would prefer to have a standard national regulatory framework. However, we are often restricted by waste and recycling being state responsibilities. Our role as industry associations is to assist members with information and advice, as well as providing coordinated advice to governments where warranted,” he added.
VWMA Executive Officer Andrew Tytherleigh said that the value of the Heads of Agreement was its demonstrable value to members, particularly those who operate across the three states.
“We are often able to assist our national members, particularly on issues of national importance, such as industrial relations, workplace health and safety, and environmental regulation,” he said. “The sharing of information and expertise between the three associations gives us a broader role in helping to shape national environmental policy.”