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April 11, 2019

A Shorten Labor Government will not stand by while the South Australian Liberals attempt to repeal and undermine worker protections.  


The Shadow Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, Brendan O’Connor will today be joined by Labor’s candidate for Adelaide, Steve Georganas and the South Australian Labor Opposition Leader, Peter Malinauskas to discuss the Marshall Liberal Government’s cruel attempts to trash the South Australian Labour Hire Licencing Bill, making it harder to protect workers from exploitation and creating an uneven playing field for employers doing the right thing. 


The former State Labor Government introduced the Labour Hire Licensing Bill 2017 to ensure labour hire workers were protected – with the laws coming into effect last year. 


The legislation made it unlawful to operate as a labour hire provider without a licence, and it would also have made it unlawful for employers to engage an unlicensed labour hire operator.  


Since then, the Marshall Liberal Government has announced it will seek to scrap the laws.  


Labor knows that labour hire operators need to be regulated to address a raft of issues currently occurring in Australian workplaces. That is why a Shorten Labor Government will establish new laws to tackle unfair labour hire practices, particularly in South Australia.  


Federal Labor will establish a national labour hire licensing scheme so that the laws can’t be undermined on a state by state basis. 


Federal Labor will also legislate to ensure that workers employed through a labour hire company will receive the same pay and conditions as people employed directly. 


Labor’s policy is based on a simple principle: if you are doing the same job, you should get the same pay. 


Too many labour hire workers are being treated like second class citizens, with lower wages, worse conditions and no job security. 


There are workers who like the flexibility that labour hire provides, but too often it’s used purely as a mechanism to pay workers less, or to deprive them of conditions and security. 


Labor at both a national and state level has listened to the concerns of workers in South Australia and has taken action to build a fair labour hire industry that helps businesses meet their needs while protecting workers. 


The Liberals’ attempts to repeal this state law shows how little they care for workers and workers’ rights. 


Labor is putting forward policies that deliver a fair go for South Australians, but the Liberals continue to look after the top end of town.