Polling shows Tasmanian voters overwhelmingly back proposed workplace laws

Media Release - November 22, 2023

Polling by Essential Research reveals that Tasmanian voters overwhelmingly support the Albanese government’s proposed workplace laws to criminalise wage theft, close labour hire loopholes, regulate the gig economy, and increase the minimum wages and rights of casual workers.

When polled on what they believed was the main contributor to the cost-of-living crisis, business profiteering received the most agreement from Tasmanian voters. 66 percent of Tasmanians also said big business has ‘too much power’ compared to only 26 percent who believed the same about unions.

The polling was conducted across the electorates of Bass, Braddon, and Lyons from the 18th to 27th October, with weighting applied in the dataset to accurately reflect the population.

There was strong agreement on key provisions of the Closing Loopholes Bill with support in Tasmania higher than any of the other polling locations (Metro QLD, Regional QLD and WA):

  • 84 percent supported laws to protect workers from wage theft
  • 71 percent supported laws to close labour hire loopholes
  • 69 percent supported laws to give more rights to gig economy workers
  • 64 percent supported laws making it more difficult to lay off permanent contract workers
  • 55 percent supported laws enabling unions to negotiate higher wages

Despite a $24 million war chest spent by big business, Tasmanians were also unconvinced that changes to workplaces laws would risk the economy, with 79% supporting some changes or major changes to help workers get ahead.

Quotes attributable to Jessica Mundy, Unions Tasmania:

“Workers’ wages have fallen behind the cost of living- this bill will help get wages moving and this polling shows workers on Tasmania overwhelmingly support this.

“The politicians opposing the legislation are choosing to side with big businesses like Qantas and the big mining companies over working people. Action on wage theft, and minimum rights for gig workers are simple steps that will make a huge different to working people.

“The research is clear- Tasmanians want to see politicians act on these issues, in a cost-of-living crisis they want politicians to step up and get wages moving.”

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