IR news - contractors laws; upcoming conference


IR news - contractors laws; upcoming conference

Government, employers at loggerheads over new contractors' laws; Unleashing Potential - The 2006 Serious Women's Business Conference.


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Government, employers at loggerheads over new contractors' laws; Unleashing Potential - The 2006 Serious Women's Business Conference.

Govt, employers at loggerheads over new contractors' laws

Employers and the Federal Government are split over the Independent Contractors Act which is due to come before the Senate this week, according to Labor.

The Financial Review yesterday reported that the Independent Contractors Association (ICA) lobbyist Ken Phillips has told the Government that if it can't get two amendments to the legislation that it wants, it would rather not have the Act passed.

The ICA has written a letter to coalition Senators demanding that the power of future workplace relations ministers to remove contractors from the legislation by regulation be removed. It also wants related legislation that would allow unions to initiate 'sham contract' prosecutions abandoned, claiming that only the Federal Government should have that power.

Owner-drivers exempt

A further worry for employer organisations, such as the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), is that truck owner-drivers in NSW and Victoria are exempt from the legislation and can continue to be represented by their union, the Transport Workers Union.

ACCI Chief Executive Peter Hendy has said a number of times that his organisation is 'completely opposed' to the exemption of owner-drivers.

Labor's Industrial Relations spokesman Stephen Smith said there was 'only one problem' with the ICA and ACCI's opposition to the legislation: 'They want the Bill to go even further, want the Bill to be even more extreme.'

'The Bill should of course be dropped, but not for those reasons,' Smith said. 'There is clearly dissension among Government ranks and dissension in the industry about the effectiveness of the Government's Independent Contractors legislation. We opposed that in the House and this week we'll oppose it in the Senate.'

ICA has few members

Unions have discounted the influence of the ICA following Phillips' evidence before a Senate Estimates Committee hearing earlier this year, where he admitted that his association had only 'a couple of hundred members', some of whom paid a $5 token fee on top of a $50 annual website charge.

Unleashing Potential - The 2006 Serious Women's Business Conference

Meanwhile , a conference directed at women in business and their particular needs will be held on Tuesday, 31 October 2006 and Wednesday, 1 November 2006, from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM.

The conference organisers have provided the following background to the conference:

'This unique, one-of-a-kind conference brings together leading professional women to challenge business standards, create connections, share experiences and develop potential.

'This is a serious conference for women who are serious about their lives and their careers. No other conference for women (or men, for that matter) provides this unique combination of high-level speakers with direct access to their experience and expertise. It is off the record and therefore confidential, frank and unique.

'Serious Women's Business is designed to inspire the business leaders of tomorrow and create opportunities for connecting and developing women in and through the ranks of leading organisations.

'ABL State Chamber is a proud sponsor of The 2006 Serious Women's Business Conference.'


ABL website 

SWB Home page 


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