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Michaelia Cash Denied Any Knowledge of AFP Raids on AWU Offices

Updated: Aug 4

Michaelia Cash is a Senator for Western Australia and member of the Liberal Party serving as Shadow Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations. Ms. Cash served as both Minister for Industrial Elections and Attorney General under the Morrison Government.

Michaelia Cash foregrounded with the text "Michaelia Cash"

Media Adviser Alerts Media to Australian Federal Police Raid of Australian Workers Union Offices

In October of 2017, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) conducted raids on Australian Workers' Union (AWU) offices in both Melbourne and Sydney.


Ms. Cash had repeatedly told a Senate Estimates committee following the raids that both she and her office had not served to alert the media in anyway. However, she later returned to the committee to withdraw her earlier statements after it was revealed that her senior media adviser had confessed to alerting journalists to the raids hours before they took place.

Ms. Cash stated that her staffer had acted without her authorisation and had resigned:

"I was not aware of it at the time and was not aware of it earlier today in [Senate] Estimates. This took place without my knowledge and was not authorised by me...I was not notified of the raids until I watched them unfold on television...My staff member has now resigned."

The AFP released a statement detailing that the raids were on the behalf of the Registered Organisations Commission (ROC) which regulates the associations between unions and employers. The ROC stated that the raids were launched out of concern that evidence could be either concealed or destroyed as part of an ongoing investigation into donations made by the AWU to GetUp! and the Labor Party and whether they were authorised under union rules.


Monitoring of Social Media

In November of 2014, it was revealed that both then-Immigration Minister, Scott Morrison, Ms. Cash (then-Assistant Immigration Minister), had spent $120,000 collectively in taxpayer funds for the purpose of monitoring the media for mentions of their names, the immigration portfolio, and cabinet colleagues, including then-Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop.


Sources & Further Reading

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-24/police-raids-at-awu-headquarters-in-sydney-melbourne/9081416


https://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-25/cash-staffer-resigns-over-awu-raids/9086214


https://www.abc.net.au/news/2022-06-20/fatima-payman-elected-to-sixth-wa-senate-seat/101167340


https://www.abc.net.au/news/2022-06-05/peter-dutton-announces-shadow-ministry/101127454


https://www.theage.com.au/politics/federal/immigration-minister-scott-morrison-defends-media-monitoring-spend-20141126-11ue6p.html


https://michaelwest.com.au/shameless-mates-stacking-at-the-administrative-appeals-tribunal/

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