CFMEU - Mining and Energy Division
Andrew began his working life at the Goonyella Mine in Queensland in 1971 where he worked as a Cadet Mine Surveyor and as a Washplant Operator.
His union involvement began in 1973, when at 18 years of age he was elected Goonyella Branch Secretary of the Queensland Colliery Employees Union (QCEU). It was the first of many honorary positions he held.
In 1981 Andrew was elected to the full time position of President of the Queensland District of the Miners' Federation. As President he was the union’s principal advocate and chief negotiator, dealing with all mining companies (including Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton, Anglo Coal and Xstrata) and the Queensland State Government, on all matters affecting union members and mining communities.
During his time as Queensland District President, Andrew served on the Coal Mines Safety and Health Advisory Council. He was a member of the working party which developed the Queensland Coal Mining Safety and Health Act 2001 and he was on the steering group which oversaw the review of the Mines Inspectorate in Queensland.
In 2006 Andrew was elected to the national position of General Vice President of the CFMEU’s Mining and Energy Division, and he was elected General Secretary of the Division in 2008.
Andrew serves the union as:
- Director and Chairman of the United Colliery Joint Venture
- Chairman of the Mineworkers Trust
- Director and Deputy Chairman of the Coal Mining Industry Long Service Leave Corporation
- Director of the Maritime Mining and Power Credit Union (MMPCU)
- Union representative on the steering group developing the National Mine Safety Framework (NMSF)
Tony Maher has been General President of the Mining and Energy Division of the CFMEU since August 1998. Prior to that he held various positions in one of the CFMEU’s predecessor unions, the Federated Engine Drivers and Firemen’s Association (FEDFA). He has been an organiser and industrial officer and has many years experience running cases in industrial tribunals on behalf of members.
As General President Tony had carriage of many major disputes waged against mineworkers under the now discredited ‘Workchoices’ legislation of the Howard Government between 1998 and 2007. These disputes included Hunter Valley No.1, Mt Thorley, Gordonstone and Blair Athol. As a direct result of that experience he led the Union's determined political campaign to oust the Howard Government in 2007.
In 2004, Tony was elected to the position of CFMEU National President making him the Chair of the National Executive and National Executive Committee (NEC) of the CFMEU. His responsibilities as a National leader of the CFMEU include dealing with:
- issues of common concern across all the Divisions of the CFMEU and the industries they represent
- the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU)
- the Commonwealth Government.
Since 2006 Tony has led the Union's work on Climate Change. In 2008 he was appointed Chair of the ACTU Climate Group. He has been appointed to the Commonwealth Government's Carbon Capture and Storage Taskforce and the Prime Minister's Energy Efficiency Advisory Group. In 2010 he was appointed to represent unions on the Federal Government Roundtable on Climate Change.
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