The head of Australia’s peak union body says he is stepping down to spend more time with his family.
Dave Oliver announced his resignation as secretary of the ACTU on Tuesday after five years in the post.
Mr Oliver said it was not an easy decision, but it was the right time for both him and the organisation.
“The time has now come for me to spend more time with my family,” he said in a statement.
Mr Oliver said he was proud to have been part of the Australian union movement for 30 years, and the changes he achieved as secretary of the ACTU.
He also noted he enjoyed working with Labor leaders over the years in developing and implementing policies that help working families.
“Now is the time for renewal at the ACTU, with a new generation of highly skilled, diverse and motivated leaders each of whom are capable of fulfilling a critical leadership role,” he said.
Bill Shorten said it had been a privilege to work alongside Mr Oliver as Labor leader, a minister and a mate.
“He’s a man you always want with you in the hard fights,” he said in a statement.
It’s been a privilege to work alongside @actudave as a Minister, a Leader & a mate. He’s a man you always want with you in the hard fights.
— Bill Shorten (@billshortenmp) January 31, 2017
Mr Shorten said the outgoing secretary had the courage to stand up for Australians who rely on unions for fair pay, conditions and a safe workplace.
He lauded Mr Oliver for leading the ACTU into new and important ground, particularly on the issue of paid parental leave, and modernising the way they campaigned and the breadth of their agenda.
“Dave richly deserves not just our sincere thanks for his efforts, but our very best wishes for the next phase of his life.”
ACTU president Ged Kearney thanked Mr Oliver for his service, noting the union movement had been united under his leadership.
He also received plaudits from Australia’s peak industry association, the Ai Group, who were often on the opposing side of the table on a number of issues.
“No matter our differences, Mr Oliver has always been open, accessible and willing to listen and to seek to understand views different to his,” chief executive Innes Willox said in a statement.
“Personally I thank him for our close working relationship which has helped resolve many issues behind the scenes and out of the public spotlight.”