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Employment and Workplace Relations

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Labor votes with the Liberals to bring ISDS to Australia via the China Free Trade Agreement

This evening the Greens voted against the enabling legislation for the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA), an agreement that exposes future Australian governments to being sued by Chinese corporations for introducing legislation that impacts on their profits, and an agreement that undermines Australian working conditions.

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Government ‘crackdown’ on exploiting employers set to be all talk

Responding to reports that the government will announce a Ministerial Working Group on the exploitation of people on working visas, Greens industrial relations spokesperson Adam Bandt MP today said this ‘crackdown’ looks set to just be all talk. Mr Bandt called on the government to support his Private Member’s Bill currently before the Parliament that will help prevent the 7-Eleven style of worker exploitation from occurring in future.

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Shipping battle not over yet

Shipping battle not over yet

The Greens have vowed to work with senate colleagues to make sure the government’s coastal shipping legislation is blocked in the Senate after it was ushered through the House of Representatives.

“The government seems determined to impose these unnecessary changes on a vital local industry at the cost of Australian jobs,” said Australian Greens transport spokesperson Senator Janet Rice.

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Crossbenchers and government deny workers voice in big project negotiations

Greens industrial relations spokesperson Adam Bandt MP today said he is disappointed that crossbench Senators joined with the Coalition to deny workers on big projects a voice on their wages and conditions. Crossbench Senators voted with the government to pass the amended Fair Work Amendment Bill 2014 today.

“It is disappointing that crossbench Senators have done a deal with the government that denies workers on big projects a voice on their wages and conditions,” Mr Bandt said.

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Labor joins government to vote down work/life balance

Labor joins government to vote down work/life balance

Labor Senators joined with the government and members of the crossbench to vote down the Greens’ moves to give people greater control of their work/life balance and greater security for casual workers, particularly those in tertiary education. The amendments were moved in the Senate by Victorian Greens Senator Janet Rice to the Fair Work Amendment Bill 2014.

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Penalty rates highlight the government's attacks on workers

I am very pleased to be speaking today on the Turnbull Liberal government's attack on penalty rates. This is a critical issue for our society. This week is national Anti-Poverty Week. It is a time to take stock of how we are going as the country of a fair go. You only have to look at this government's attacks on penalty rates, which have just been continued in the contribution by Senator Back, to see the challenges we face.

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Greens amendments would make this a truly fair work bill

The Greens amendments are designed to turn what is called a fair work bill into a true fair work bill. Much of what has been put up in this Fair Work Amendment Bill 2014 actually is making work less fair for ordinary Australian workers. Although it seems that there have been negotiations going on between the government and the crossbench to remove some of the worst parts of the bill, it looks like we will end up having as legislation something that is vastly unfair to workers.

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Greens introduce bill to help prevent future 7-Eleven style worker exploitation

Greens industrial relations spokesperson Adam Bandt MP today introduced into Parliament a bill to help prevent franchise employees from being underpaid in the future by making head office franchisors share liability for their franchisees’ underpayments.

“Something is wrong with our system when the boss of 7-Eleven is a billionaire but its workers are getting paid under $10 an hour and threatened with deportation,” Mr Bandt said.

“By allowing workers to claim any underpayments directly from head office, this law will help bring about a culture shift.”

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We’ll be in a ‘seven day economy’ when Parliament regularly sits on weekends: Bandt

In response to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s comments today on weekend rates, Greens spokesperson on industrial relations Adam Bandt MP today said that it will only be a “seven day economy” when Parliament regularly sits on weekends.

“I’ll believe that Saturday and Sunday no longer deserve the same special treatment when Parliament regularly sits on weekends,” Mr Bandt said.

“A ‘seven day economy’ doesn’t mean a seven day working week. The important parts of the weekend should be preserved and if you have to work, you should be paid properly for it.”

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