Future leaders lobby Canberra to fix driver shortage
PARTICIPANTS in the Daimler Truck and Bus Future Leaders' Forum have discussed key industry issues in lobbying meetings with Australian politicians, including ways to plug the driver shortfall.
The Daimler Future Leaders have met with Government, Opposition and minor party senators at Parliament House in Canberra, raising the importance of driver training and attraction, advanced braking and liquid fuel emergency planning.
"These issues are important to every member of the Australian trucking industry, and the ATA is proud to work with such promising participants who demonstrate a great passion and commitment,” ATA Chair Geoff Crouch said.
"Our time at Parliament House saw the Daimler Future Leaders sit in on Senate Question Time, after a formal lunch with Senator Jim Molan and lobbying meetings with members of the coalition and opposition parties,” he said.
The meetings focused on solutions to the three key issues:
- That autonomous emergency braking (AEBS) be mandated for new heavy vehicles.
- That truck driver licensing be upgraded as part of an industry-wide effort to tackle the driver shortage. Research indicates a reasonable increase in licensing requirements would make trucking more attractive as a skilled occupation.
- That fuel emergency legislation be amended to ensure trucking businesses are not sued for prioritising essential deliveries during a fuel shortage.
"Our industry is constantly changing and it's important we equip the next generation of leaders with the skills and knowledge they need to ensure the future of the trucking industry remains sustainable and viable,” Mr Crouch said.
As part of the forum, participants will each undertake a leadership project focused on an industry issue, with many developing potential solutions to the key items discussed in the lobbying meetings which will then be presented at Trucking Australia 2019.
During the forum, participants are taking part in developmental workshops delivered by Head of the School of Politics and International Relations at the Australian National University, Dr Andrew Banfield; well-known journalist and communications expert Anne Fulwood; and CEO of Wisdom Learning Rod Hattch.
"Daimler is thrilled to be part of such an invaluable program that allows participants to work so closely with decision-makers and gain valuable industry insight from expert mentors,” President and CEO of Daimler Truck and Bus Australia Pacific Daniel Whitehead said.
ATA Chair Geoff Crouch also noted the important role ATA member associations have played in the forum's success.
"It is wonderful to have such high engagement from our member associations in developing leaders. It is clear to see each participant represents their employer and member organisation with pride,” Mr Crouch said.