31 October, 2012

As the LNP Goverment continues it’s review into WorkCover in QLD the Transport Workers’ Union demands the Government not leave workers any worse off.

“The Newman Government needs to keep away from WorkCover, they’ve already done enough damage to workers in QLD,” TWU State Secretary Peter Biagini said.

“Nine months ago the importance of WorkCover really became clear to us at the TWU,” Peter said.

“While travelling to work TWU member Greg Trevana, hit a block of wood on the road and came off his motor bike.”

“He skidded along on his face andwas slamming up against a guard rail before he came to a stop and suffered horrendous injuries,” Peter said.

The injuries Gary Trevana sustained include:

  • He died twice in the first hours
  • He lost 1/3 of his tongue,
  • His jaw was shattered
  • He sustained multiple compressed fractures in his back
  • After initially avoiding spinal surgery, Gary now has rods holding his spine together from vertibrae L3 to T6
  • After one operation Gary contracted pneumonia, and after another he got a psuedamonous infection in his spinal wound
  • Gary has been diagnosed with post traumatic stress, he’s in and out of depression and Sandra has concerns Gary has residual brain damage
  • Gary has constant pain of varying degrees and is constantly medicated.
  • After 6-7 operations so far Gary has at least 5 more to come – including facial reconstruction.

“Gary’s injuries are incredibly serious but the impact is felt by his whole family,” Peter said.

“Gary’s wife Sandra has been a pillar of strength keeping their family together and looking after Gary during the past nine months,” Peter said.

“I couldn’t imagine how we could have managed without WorkCover but we really don’t have much choice but to keep on going,” Sandra Trevana said.

“Without WorkCover we’d be completely homeless, we wouldn’t be able to feed ourselves or pay our mortgage, we wouldn’t even be able to afford the parking for the medical appointments let alone the medications if WorkCover wasn’t available,” Sandra said.

“WorkCover costs the government nothing, WorkCover costs nothing for employers and as Sandra and Gary’s story shows it is a lifeline that is an invaluable support for families faced with the most challenging circumstances,” Peter said.

“With WorkCover we’re able to have specialists come to the house for Gary’s appointments, without it we just wouldn’t have the capacity to get him to appointments. He is in constant pain – some days are worse than others but it’s a constant struggle,” Sandra said.

“I can’t imagine how people would go through something like this is there wasn’t any money coming through.”

“We have two teenage kids and they’ve had to grow up pretty quick, they’ve had a lot of stress on them during the past couple of months – no child wants to see their father like this,” Sandra said.

“It’s not about enjoying life to the fullest anymore it’s just about getting through every day – hour by hour,” Sandra said.

“The Transport Workers’ Union is calling on the Newman government to do the right thing and keep WorkCover the way it is,” Peter said.

Mick O’Brien
M: 0411 875 910

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