COALITION SPLIT AS NATS FOLLOW LABOR ON LABOUR HIRE

THE HON BRENDAN O’CONNOR.
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2 years ago
COALITION SPLIT AS NATS FOLLOW LABOR ON LABOUR HIRE
THE HON BRENDAN O’CONNOR
Reports show that NSW and Victorian Nationals have split with the Coalition and are following Labor’s lead, belatedly showing their support for a national labour hire licensing scheme.  As Labor leads on policies for decent jobs, higher wages and secure work, Malcolm Turnbull is dealing with his divided and dysfunctional government as the National break away from him to support Labor’s policy.  Labor doesn’t want to wait until Malcolm Turnbull calls an election to ensure workers are treated fairly. We want it to happen now, so we call on the federal Nationals and the Liberals to follow Labor’s lead and join with the NSW and Victorian Nationals and support Labor’s labour hire policy.  This week, Labor announced that a Shorten Labor Government will crack down on dodgy labour hire companies that rip off and exploit workers.  Labor will legislate to ensure that workers employed through a labour hire company will receive the same pay and conditions as people employed directly.  Labor will also introduce a national labour hire licensing scheme to protect workers from exploitation, providing an important floor of standards. We will require all labour hire companies to be licensed. Companies that are based overseas and supply labour to Australian firms, either directly or through other companies, will also have to be licensed to do business here. 
Federal Labor will also examine the definition of “casual” work setting an objective test for deciding when a worker is “casual”.  At the moment, there are too many workers in Australia subject to unfair labour hire practices, often treated like second class citizens with lower wages, worse conditions and no job security.  For some workers labour hire and casual work is a pathway into a permanent job, but for too many workers it has become a way of life. For these workers it’s tough to pay the rent and the bills, let alone make longer-term decisions like taking out a car loan or buying their own home.   While there are workers who like the flexibility that labour hire provides, too often it’s used purely as a mechanism to pay workers less, or to deprive them of conditions and security.  Labor’s reforms are about protecting workers and giving them and their families a fair go, making sure that labour hire workers aren’t caught in a cycle of precarious work and unfair conditions which they can’t escape from. 
Malcolm Turnbull is so out of touch that he keeps telling us that casualisation isn’t a problem and he has rejected the need for regulation of the labour hire industry, while voting against laws that would help workers recover unpaid wages where a labour hire company does a runner.  A fairer labour hire industry is good for workers and good for business.  
Employment labour hire Wages Workers