Australians should have safe jobs, well paid jobs and rewarding jobs, but the government’s radical shake-up of the industrial relations system will not deliver that, Business Council chief executive Jennifer Westacott said.
“These changes will create confusion and extra costs for consumers, make it harder to hire casual workers and create uncertainty for employing anybody.
“Any government that’s serious about cost of living would not do this.
“They should not add cost and complexity at a time when people are struggling to pay their bills.
“The government needs to go back to the drawing board, so we are clear about the problem we are trying to solve and we’re clear about the ramifications.
“We need a system that takes us forward not backwards.
“We need a system that drives productivity, not stifles it, because that will stifle wages growth.
“The case has not been made for this radical shake-up.
“We look forward to seeing the legislation on Monday and we want the government to release any modelling and the risk assessment.
“We agree with the minister and want a serious policy debate. But a serious policy debate will produce the evidence, it will explain how widespread the loopholes are, then it will be clear and unambiguous how these ideas will solve the problem.
“The Senate should take its time with this and do this properly, engage small business and regional communities, and undertake its own modelling and risk assessment.
“This is flawed, it’s not the way forward and the Bill should not be passed because the bottom line is this will not close loopholes. It will open up more problems and the people who will be affected most are the Australian workers who will have lower productivity and lower wages, consumers and small businesses who are already struggling with a sea of red tape.”