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Two MEU members next to a large coal digger


New General Vice President elected

August 15, 2023

Mining and Energy Union Queensland President Stephen Smyth has been elected unopposed to a new national role as General Vice President. He will begin the new Sydney-based role on 1 September 2023. 

General President Tony Maher said the Union had decided to create a General Vice President role to focus primarily on workplace safety. 

“We have filled General Vice President roles in the past, depending on need and available resources,” said Mr Maher.

“We identified a gap in our capacity to drive safety improvements in our industries nationally. Stephen Smyth is an experienced underground coal miner, qualified safety inspector and effective union official with a proven track record in driving safety reforms in Queensland. We welcome his election to the national role and believe he’ll be an asset across the union.” 

Stephen Smyth said he was looking forward to working with District branches to identify common safety challenges and raise standards across mining and energy workplaces.

“Although our industries have some of the strongest safety regulations in the world, due to campaigning by unions over many decades, we also have too many employers who cut corners and put production over safety,” said Mr Smyth. 

“As we’ve seen in Queensland with a spate of fatalities and serious injuries in our coal industry – there is no room for complacency when it comes to safety. 

“I hope to build our capacity to hold employers to account in the workplace and advocate for stronger laws and regulations to protect mining and energy workers.” 

Nominations for the role closed on 7 August and Mr Smyth was elected unopposed. 

Stephen Smyth

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