Tas WorkChoices report finds 'horrors', calls for  		abolition

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Tas WorkChoices report finds 'horrors', calls for abolition

A Tasmanian Parliamentary report which details what it calls 'horrors' of the WorkChoices IR system and recommends its abolition has been released in Hobart.

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A Tasmanian Parliamentary report which details what it calls 'horrors' of the WorkChoices IR system and recommends its abolition has been released in Hobart.

The report was initiated by Premier Paul Lennon last year, who said it would be a place where Tasmanian workers disadvantaged by the WorkChoices industrial changes could have their say and be protected by parliamentary privilege.

'Stunt' says Liberals

However the State Liberals refused to be involved and called it a 'stunt'.

Recommendations

The report recommends:

  • the repeal of the Workplace Relations Amendment (WorkChoices) Act 2005
  • legislative change to ensure that no new AWAs agreements can be entered into
  • legislative change to ensure that no individual agreements that can undermine collective agreements or awards can be entered into
  • legislative change to restore to the AIRC the powers that it possessed prior to WorkChoices
  • that both the State and Federal Government provide more assistance to organisations that support and advise Tasmania's most vulnerable workers to help protect them from workplace exploitation
  • the immediate provision of universal access to unfair dismissal laws, under the same conditions as were available prior to the introduction of WorkChoices
  • the immediate abolition of the Australian Building and Construction Commission by repealing the Building and Construction Industry Improvement Act 2005 (Commonwealth)

'Mistreated'

It also gives examples of workers who have mistreated by employers under WorkChoices, including:

  • An employee of 10 years who had an argument with the boss and was demoted. The employee had to accept the situation or resign.
  • A woman who was sacked after her ex-partner entered her work and abused her. The boss said: 'I don't want that sort of thing happening here.' She had no redress as the employer had fewer than 100 employees.
  • A worker who was told in an email that her shifts would be cut from five to two days a week. The email subject said: 'Termination of employee, bringing in a hired gun.' She was later sacked over an argument with another worker.
  • A worker who was pressured to sign an AWA. 'My supervisor told me if I didn't sign the AWA my hours would reduce from a 12-hour shift to eight hours and no overtime would be paid.'
  • A worker who refused to sign an AWA was put on punishment, 'taken away from his normal work and put in a shed'. He was restricted to just sweeping up the shed for eight hours a day for three days rather than his normal 9-11-hour shifts. Once he signed the AWA his duties returned to normal.

Related

SA WorkChoices inquiry slams Govt IR laws
 

 

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