Graham Kierath

Graham Donald Kierath (born 21 July 1950) is a former Australian politician who served 11 years in the Parliament of Western Australia. He is best known for his five-year term as Western Australian Minister for Labour Relations.

Graham Kierath
Western Australian Minister for Labour Relations
In office
16 February 1993 – 28 July 1998
PremierRichard Court
Preceded byYvonne Henderson
Succeeded byCheryl Edwardes
Member of the Western Australian Parliament
for Riverton
In office
4 February 1989 – 10 February 2001
Preceded byNew creation
Succeeded byTony McRae
Personal details
Graham Donald Kierath

(1950-07-21) 21 July 1950 (age 70)
Subiaco, Western Australia
Political partyLiberal Party

Political careerEdit

Kierath was elected to the seat of Riverton in the Western Australian Legislative Assembly at the 1989 Western Australian election,[1] representing the Liberal Party.

After the election of Richard Court as Western Australian Premier in 1993, Kierath was appointed as Minister for Labour Relations. Soon after taking on the role, he initiated the first of what were to become three waves of industrial relations changes. The first wave involved legislation to allow employees to directly negotiate workplace contracts with employers. Those changes attracted fierce criticism from the labour and union movements, with stickers being produced reading "Kierath's a Wanker".[2][3] In 1993, Kierath introduced the Workplace Agreements Act 1993, the most significant and fundamental reform of the Western Australian industrial relations system since the enactment of the original Conciliation and Arbitration Act in 1900.[4]

In 1997 Kierath introduced anti-smoking regulations that banned smoking in all enclosed workplaces from mid-1998. While the regulations were criticised by the hotel industry, the Australian Medical Association recognised him with the "AMA President's Award".[5][6]

Post-parliamentary activitiesEdit

Following his unexpected defeat at the 2001 election, after a 10.16% swing against him, Kierath remained closely involved with the WA Liberal Party and retained his political ambitions.[7] He unsuccessfully contested the preselection for his former seat at the 2005 state election, but was the Liberal Party candidate in the seat of Alfred Cove, where he was beaten by the sitting independent Janet Woollard. He failed to gain preselection for the electorate of Murdoch in 2008.[8] He became president of the party's Tangney division.[7]


  1. ^ "Hon. Graham Donald Kierath MLA". Parliament of Western Australia. Retrieved 28 December 2013.
  2. ^ Pryer, Wendy (28 November 1996). "Wins, Losses In Workplace". The West Australian.
  3. ^ Egan, Colleen (19 January 2001). "Kierath - from villain to man of the moment". The Australian.
  4. ^ Graham Kierath, Minister for Labour Relations (8 July 1993). "Workplace Agreements Bill. Second Reading" (PDF). Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). Western Australia: Legislative Assembly. pp. 1450–1451.
  5. ^ Price, Matt (23 July 1997). "Smoking ban sets benchmark for States". The Australian.
  6. ^ "President's Award". The Australian Medical Association. Archived from the original on 8 February 2014. Retrieved 29 December 2013.
  7. ^ a b Hickey, Phil (16 June 2012). "Graham Kierath banned from road for 10 months". Sunday Times (Perth). Retrieved 28 January 2014.
  8. ^ "Tips and rumours". Crikey. 20 August 2008. Retrieved 28 January 2014.