Reintroduction of Federal sacking Bill a possibility

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Reintroduction of Federal sacking Bill a possibility

The Federal Government is considering reintroducing the Federal Workplace Relations Termination of Employment Bill that was rejected by the Senate last night.

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The Federal Government is considering reintroducing the Federal Workplace Relations Termination of Employment Bill that was rejected by the Senate last night.

Not willing to say when or in what form the Bill would be introduced, a spokesperson for the Federal Workplace Relations Minister, Tony Abbott, told WorkplaceInfo reintroduction of the Bill was a consideration and the Bill was not yet a double dissolution trigger.

Democrat amendments

Last night in the Senate, the Australian Democrats tried unsuccessfully to push through amendments to the Bill.

The Democrats wanted the probationary period for casuals to be set at six months and to clarify the definition of employee so 'genuine' employees had access to unfair dismissal laws.

Australian Democrats Federal Workplace Relations spokesperson, Senator Andrew Murray said: 'It is remarkable that the ATO can determine a person to be an employee for tax reasons, but industrial relations law might assume them not to be an employee.'

'It is vital that this contradiction be fixed.'

However, the Democrats were willing to support sections of the Bill that sought to expand the Federal jurisdiction dealing with harsh, unjust or unreasonable dismissals so it covered all employees of constitutional corporations.

Murray said the spread of uniform unfair dismissal rules to an estimated 85% of Australians was 'desirable'.

According to the Democrats, a uniform unfair dismissal system would have the following benefits:

  • common rights across Australia;
  • efficient competitive enterprises; and
  • coverage for workers not covered presently by Federal or State awards or agreements.

The ALP rejected the Bill outright.

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