Statement by QAHC

Executive Director Remuneration

The annual salary of the Executive Director in 2011/12 was in the range of $125,672 to $146,138 (9 pay point progressions) and is set by the Board of Directors.

The Board negotiated a reduction in hours of the ED from 38 hrs/wk to 32hrs/wk in May 2012, and the salary subsequently reduced.  Following the announcement of the defunding of Healthy Communities on 20 May, hours were returned to 38/wk.  The ‘savings’ from reduced pay to the Executive Director were to be used to help retain another staff position at Healthy Communities, that otherwise would have been reduced to part-time hours or be made redundant.

In 2011-12 the Executive Director contributed 232 volunteer (i.e. unpaid) hours/6weeks to the organisation.

Healthy Communities benchmarks the salary of the Executive Director against the annual Not for Profit Remuneration Report, published by Enterprise Care Pty Ltd.

Queensland Average in 2011

Total Remuneration

Australian Average in 2011

Total Remuneration

Healthy Communities in 2011

Annual Budget $3million to under $10,000 $146,246 $170,075 $125,672 to $146,138
21-40 Employees $138,070 $169,718
State-wide Scope $166,054
Average Bonus $19,302 No bonus paid
Average Car Supplied $14,368 No car supplied
Average Car Allowance $10,601 No car allowance
Average Professional Development $4,316 $1,800 (same as all full-time staff)

Meeting with the Minister

No-one from Healthy Communities, including Executive Director Paul Martin has met with the Minister since his election (despite repeated requests from Healthy Communities to do so).  A meeting did occur with the Minister’s advisers on 8th June (3 weeks after the funding decision was announced).

Healthy Communities content in Q News

Ray Mackereth is the publisher of Q News.  Healthy Communities’ contact with Q News is through the editor, advertising staff and writers, not the publisher.  Healthy Communities regularly provides media releases to Q News (along with the other LGBT media) and is always willing to respond to requests for further information, interviews etc. where relevant and timelines allow.  Information about Healthy Communities can also be taken from our e-newsletter, website and Facebook pages (as other LGBT media outlets regularly do).

Healthy Communities advertising spend in the 3 main print-based LGBT media over the past 3 years is provided below.  Q News continues to receive the largest spend.

2011-12

2010-11

2009-10

Q News $39,428.69 $27,861.83 $68,320.15
Qld Pride $27,642.36 $22,061.77 $24,801.55
Star Observer $12,875 $0 $804

Relationship to the LNP Government

Over our 28 years Healthy Communities has always worked or sought to work co-operatively with whatever government is in power at local, state and federal levels.  Prior to and during the 2012 election Healthy Communities produced information on the health and wellbeing needs of LGBT Queenslanders (including HIV) and provided recommendations for actions to respond to these issues.  Healthy Communities had meetings prior to the election with the Shadow Health Minister (Mark McArdle), Shadow Communities Minister (Fiona Simpson) and Shadow Attorney General (Jarrod Bleijie).  This is in addition to meeting with staffers of relevant government ministers and with several individual candidates from multiple parties.

Following the election Healthy Communities wrote to the new Health Minister (Springborg), congratulating him on his election and appointment, providing him with information on LGBT and HIV needs and recommended actions and requesting a meeting.  As part of the ‘Queer Coalition’, Healthy Communities hosted a forum on ‘Working with the LNP’ which was attended by around 60 community members and explored ways of working constructively with the new government.

Healthy Communities has met since the election with other Ministers and new LNP members of parliament, and is developing positive, constructive relationships with them.

We reject the accusation that we are spreading hatred about the government.  Healthy Communities has always been careful to be non-party political, as is required by us as a health promotion charity.  We focus on the health needs of LGBT people, and bring these to the attention of political parties and relevant ministers.

Questions Raised

What did Ray Mackereth say to Minister Springborg about Healthy Communities before the announcement of our defunding?

Was any of what he said accurate?

To what degree did what Mr Mackereth said to the Minister influence the Minister’s decision to defund Healthy Communities?

What checks did the Minister make on the accuracy of the information provided by Mr Mackereth?

Why did the Minister not check any of these claims with Healthy Communities itself?

What advice did the Minister receive from the Department about effectiveness and management of Healthy Communities?

Is there a conflict of interest with Mr Mackereth owning a gay sex venue and advising the Minister on HIV prevention?

Is there a conflict of interest with Mr Mackereth owning LGBT media, which makes a profit from HIV prevention advertising, and advising the Minister on HIV prevention?

If Mr Mackereth had questions or issues with the management and performance of Healthy Communities, why was this not put to the Board or Executive Director of Healthy Communities?

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About the author

Miles has worked as an advocate and mediator for most of his life. His previous career was focussed on employment and discrimination cases. He now is a journalist and writer with a keen interest in LGBTI affairs and national politics. He plays on Twitter under @mileshef.