A-G’s union demands a partisan play public sector is used to


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A search for information on unions could have a negative effect on the relationship between the federal government and a public service already being asked to do more with less.

An effort by the the Attorney-General’s Department to canvass the entire public service for information about past interactions between government and unions could increase tensions between bureaucrats and politicians.

The Australian Council of Trade Unions has cried foul over a leaked letter from the AGD that asked all arms of the Australian public service for wide-ranging information about their past interactions with unions by the end of this week.

ACTU secretary Tim Lyons argues it’s unnecessary given the commission’s powers, and part of an ideological crusade. The letter states the information is needed in case the current royal commission into trade unions hears allegations of wrongdoing by a minister, their staff or a public servant.

The request — and the ACTU’s subsequent freedom of information search for any links with Attorney-General George Brandis (pictured) or Employment Minister Eric Abetz — has created significant extra work for public servants already under pressure to do more with less.

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