A report on Corporate Avoidance of the Fair Work Act handed down over night paints a damning picture of a government and a Minister who is letting corporations trample workers’ rights.
The report found that action is needed from the Minister Michaelia Cash to fix collective bargaining, stop wage theft, regulate use of labour hire, end sham contracting, stop exploitation of temporary visa workers and ensure that workers have access to accurate pay records and a workable system which gives them recourse against employers who do the wrong thing.
The Minister has done nothing to address any of these issues, but the Turnbull Government has:
- Slashed penalty rates for some of Australia’s lowest-paid workers
- Declined to make a submission to increase the minimum wage
- Created a disastrous internship scheme for young people which pays $4 per hour
- Publically argued against a new leave entitlement for people experiencing family and domestic violence
- Cheered on as employers tear up collective agreements and make jobs insecure to cut workers’ pay and conditions
- Brought on a raft of anti-union legislation in an attempt to open workers up to even more exploitation.
Quotes attributable to ACTU Secretary, Sally McManus:
“This is a savage indictment of the Turnbull Government Minister, Michaelia Cash, who has done nothing to address systemic avoidance of the law by corporations, and has instead spent her time trying to destroy the rights of Australian workers.”
“The Minister knows that the system is broken and it’s hurting working people who are being exploited, but it seems she simply doesn’t care.”
The Employment Minister’s first responsibility should be to working people, not appeasing her donors in the corporate sector. Minister Cash is overseeing a broken system that is hurting workers in this country. Time and time again she has put the interests of big corporations and the very rich ahead of the interests of working people, this report makes that abundantly clear.”
“This Government is directly responsible for the fact that the rules are broken for working people, and workers in Australia deserve better. They need a Government which will work to change the rules to restore fairness in the workplace and fight inequality.”