Driven by a decade of Coalition government negligence, Australia is facing a cost of living crisis where wages have continued to decline in real terms despite continued profit growth. For over a decade nearly all productivity growth has been taken in profits and now while families are struggling to make ends meet, big companies are posting record profits while real wages are seeing record decline. This is not fair, it is not equitable nor is it sustainable.
Work has become more precarious. New forms of work have emerged where millions of workers are now engaged outside the protections that are meant to be afforded by the Fair Work Act. Too many employers have engaged in wage theft costing Australian workers billions. Our laws have not kept pace with the changing nature of work or the ways some employers have restructured, reorganised or use technicalities to avoid laws that are designed to protect working people.
The existence of myriad loopholes means that even where industrial legislation is designed to protect working people’s interests, it is not operating as designed. Balance and fairness must be restored to a system that for too long had the scales tipped towards the interests of large corporate interests over every day working Australians.