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An aviation researcher, writer, aviation participant, pilot & agricultural researcher. Author of over 35 scientific publications world wide.

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Has #casa improved since McCormick left Fort Fumble??

That is a serious question to be asked.

The May 2013 Estimates hearing is instructive [see below for Hansard extract] and as is now known, there was a seriously improper relationship between McCormick and the ICC. This relationship did not let proper investigation of complaints move forward and as a result, there are many complaints still “in-the-in-box” which require airing.

#casa can push complaints to one side with impunity and allow the 12-month “rule” to move forward and avoid complaints going to the ICC [Industry Complaints Commissioner], who reports directly to the #casa Board. The 12-month rule must be removed so that people can get the festering complaints, which in the past 10-years, both McCormick and Skidmore have ignored.

I believe that the ignoring of these questions/ complaints etc. has been an institutionalised process. The involvement of the “Ethics and Conduct Committee” in this process, where complaints about individual #casa staff members can be side-lined with immunity is a serious problem.

The chair still is Jonathon Aleck.

The current ICC [Jonathon Hanton] reports to the Board [#ASRR recommendation], whereas Elizabeth Hampton, reported to the CEO directly. The current situation, where there is some semblance of an independent Board, gives partial credibility to the proper examination of issues and complaints. If the Board issued minutes of the meetings, many in #aviation would have a modicum of relief of progress being made to the individual issues.

Hanton certainly has credibility, but must be well funded in order to carry out the ICC function with authority.

There are signs of this, but the current budget for the position would be interesting to uncover.

I would think that, given the broad-scale negative position of the #colmarbrunton survey, #casa would be actively working to fix the “perceived” problems of the #aviation industry. I don’t see any evidence of this situation at all.

That #casa gives three individuals a guernsey to speak with #aopa on the #avmed issue, who have collectively only 18-months with #casa, demonstrates the attitude of disdain for #aviation.

This of course, was the situation after the 6th May Tamworth meeting, when the arranged 26th May meeting never had issued minutes and #aopa were given to the Department [Mrdak] and #casa to be dealt with on the serious matters raised at Tamworth.

A means to stop the progress of the #aviation which had developed a way forward following the meeting with Barnaby Joyce [deputy prime Minister] and Darren Chester [Aviation Minister].

There needs to be specific and transparent direction by the #casa Board.

Answer to the question??

No Improvement by #casa


Estimates Hansard, 29 May 2013, p. 148

Senator XENOPHON: This committee has now completed several inquiries into the aviation sector, the most recent last week. One of the common threads in each inquiry, which was raised specifically in the most recent report, is a prevailing fear of retribution from CASA for speaking out, particularly in the most recent inquiry. The committee continually heard that people did not want to criticise CASA or its operations because they truly believed that there would be some sort of negative reprisal for them.
The fears seem to be directed to you and some of your senior managers.
Why do you think this is the case?
Why is there that perception?

Mr McCormick: I was going to make an opening statement where I would address this to say that I am at a bit of a loss to understand this as well. I can guarantee you that we have a policy that if anybody threatens retribution from within CASA or carries out retribution we will take action and that is the strongest possible action. I have told everyone in my organisation that. I recently went around to see—

Senator XENOPHON: It is directed to you as well. It is particularly to you. I am raising fairly that this is what I am told and I dare say some of my colleagues have been told the same thing.

Mr McCormick: As I said, no-one has brought anything to me or to my industry complaints commissioner to complain about bullying or harassment or anything from my point of view.

Senator IAN MACDONALD: Mr McCormick, you said that at that meeting in Brisbane and people got up and gave you evidence of where they had complained.

Mr McCormick: If you have a question about the complaints, I can go through that as well.

Senator IAN MACDONALD: Your excuse that no-one has ever raised it with you. You said that at this meeting and three people got up and gave you examples of where they had complained where they had been victimised.

Mr McCormick: I will defer to my industry complaints commissioner on the details.

Senator IAN MACDONALD: Mr McCormick, you were at that meeting and I congratulate you for going along. I thought that was very good of you to do that, but can I say to you there were 83 people there and before you turned up I heard 23 separate complaints about all aspects of CASA.

I saw you in action and you might recall there was one occasion where I was occasioned to say to you, ‘Mr McCormick, it might be useful if you shut up until the guy finishes his question.’

That was the tone of the meeting all along. Now, you have a difficult job. Safety is paramount. But 83 people cannot be wrong. They cannot all be making up these stories. They gave you, on that day, evidence of where complaints had been made to you and your people and you continued to deny it in the face of them telling you that to your face.