State Government reneges on promise to assist former Kimberley Agriculture Protection Board (APB) Workers

29th July 2010 - Greens MLC Robin Chapple has roundly criticised the State Government for backing away from a promise to provide assistance to former Kimberley Agriculture Protection Board (APB) workers who were poisoned by illegal herbicides in the course of their employment in the 1970s and 1980s.

“These people are in a desperate situation. Many are ill and unable to work. Many others have died, leaving families behind to manage without them,” Mr Chapple said.

“I am appalled at the treatment of the former workers, who have been let down by successive governments.

“This is not a political issue. It is very clearly an occupational health and safety matter and as such concerns each and every one of us.

“The Greens have campaigned long and hard to win justice for affected workers and we will continue to do so. We need the major parties to show compassion and act on the matter,” Mr Chapple said.

The promise to establish a $1million fund to provide proper access to justice to people with illnesses other than cancer was made by Hon. Norman Moore MLC in the lead up to the State election in 2005.

It was reiterated a few years later by the Premier Colin Barnett. Soon after winning office in 2008 Mr Barnett acknowledged the workers’ 30-year battle for compensation as a ‘tragedy’, and promised to have a ‘fresh and open look’ at the matter.

“When in opposition, Norman Moore promised to provide powerful advocacy for the former APB workers,” Mr Chapple said.

“Since then, people have continued to suffer, many more people have died and still nothing has happened to address this appalling situation.”

  • For more information please contact Robin Chapple on 0409 379 263
Go to top