UnionsACT welcomes recommendations from Insecure Work Inquiry

UnionsACT has today welcomed the recommendations from the ACT Assembly Inquiry into the extent, nature and consequence of insecure work in the ACT.

The Inquiry commenced in February 2017 and received 39 submissions, including submissions by UnionsACT, numerous unions, and individual workers. The submissions provided evidence of the negative consequences of insecure work in the ACT, including:

  • Low security of employment;
  • Low security of income, working hours and earnings;
  • Exclusion of leave rights, including annual and sick leave under the National Employment Standards, and parental leave;
  • The growth of insecure work from 26,000 people in 1997 to 33,000 in 2014;
  • The gendered nature of insecure work, with women over-represented in casualised jobs.

The Inquiry has made a number of positive recommendations to the ACT Government. UnionsACT supports the intent of the recommendations, including:

  • That the ACT Government introduce an ACT-specific labour hire licensing scheme; and
  • That the ACT Government not use labour hire and cease using fixed-term contracts.

The following quotes are attributable to Alex White, secretary of UnionsACT:

“The Assembly Inquiry report has made a number of significant recommendations that should be seriously considered by the ACT Government.

“Establishing a labour hire licensing scheme must be at the top of the Government’s agenda.

“UnionsACT also welcomes recommendations that the ACT Government phase out its own use of insecure working arrangements, including the use of labour hire and short-term contracts.

“The ACT Government should aim to be a model employer that provides secure jobs.”