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Another free story.

Something a little more whimsical this time. A future, frightening newspaper article. A chilling reminder that things can go terribly wrong if voters don't exercise their democratic privilege wisely.

Coalition Announces Workplace Changes


Tuesday 31 March 2031

Reports just received clarify proposed changes to the new coalition’s workplace diversity laws.

Image: Parliament House, Canberra (Source: Novotel)

In his first official media statement, Prime Minister Palmer said, ‘It is plain to see how Australia has benefitted from diversity. We must embrace diversity in all its forms, not just in those token areas that previous governments have focused.’

In a turnaround from her previous statements, Deputy Prime Minister Hanson has said, ‘Diversity provides our country with strength and vitality. It is wonderful that in our country a former fish and chip shop owner will one day be Prime Minister.’ Deputy Prime Minster Hanson explained that she meant to say Acting Prime Minister. However, some see this as illustrative of cracks already appearing in the coalition, that Palmer and Hanson have cobbled together government. While major parties are still reeling from the result at the ballot box, voters have embraced what only a few years ago would have been considered fringe, distractive or single-issue parties.

Image: Deputy Prime Minister Hanson (Source: Foxy image)

Under the legislation to be introduced by Prime Minister Palmer in the first sitting of parliament will be an expansion of the Equal Employment Opportunity (Commonwealth Authorities) Act 1987 (Cth) to legislate that every workplace of over 150 staff will be required to employ:

  • A member of the Sporting Shooters Association

  • A climate change denier

  • A model train enthusiast

  • A Morris dancer

Image: Morris Dancers celebrate outside their new clubrooms. (Source: Leicester Morris Men)

Deputy Prime Minister Hanson has since denied reports, attributed to have come from her office, requiring the inclusion of members of other minorities including Haiku poets, vegans, ukulele players and those who dislike coriander.

Voter reaction to the forthcoming legislation is expected to be popular with Palmer-Hanson voters, however, the reaction from more traditional voters has been mixed. Comments have been sought from current and former politicians however they are remaining tight-lipped.

Former Prime Minister John Howard, now 91, when contacted at the Sunnyvale Nursing Home said, ‘My preference would have been to include the coriander haters. I can’t stand the stuff. Don't you think it smells like cat's pee?’

Market reaction has been largely positive. Shares in RTC Dancing, Australia’s largest Morris Dance school, surged 115% on the news before a trading halt was called. Market analysts have criticised the inclusion of climate change deniers, due to their scarcity in the market.

Gordon B. Franklin, CEO of Tinfoil Hat Recruitment, suggested that climate change deniers will now attract premium salaries. In reaction to this, Deputy Prime Minister Hanson has foreshadowed that government administered exams will be introduced to ensure that only genuine climate change deniers are considered.

Image: Gordon B. Franklin, recruitment consultant to the coalition (Source: Google images)

Members of minorities not included in the legislation are understandably disappointed.

‘We will continue to fight for proper recognition in the workplace. Ukulele players have and will continue to contribute to this country’s diversity. Ukulele players demand appropriate recognition in Australian society,’ said Peter Mitchell, president of the Australian Society for Musical Diversity, when contacted earlier today.

Additional clarity is expected when parliament sits later this week.

Image: Ukulele players are outraged (Source: Society for the Performing Arts).

This piece was originally written as an exercise in speculative fiction during a short, on-line course with Writers Victoria and Julie Koh.

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1 Comment

Peter McCafferty
Peter McCafferty
Sep 12, 2023

Love the photos. Pauline looks like she's fallen on hard times!

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