Monday, 24 March 2014

Yet another Abbott Government attack on workers' wages

Australian Government Dept. of Employment 20 March 2014:

Repeal Day - revocation of the Fair Work Principles and the Commonwealth Cleaning Services Guidelines, including the requirements applying to textile, clothing and footwear manufacturers.

Thursday 20 March 2014

As part of Repeal Day, the Coalition Government announced that it would cease a number of regulatory arrangements that are administered by the Department of Employment and apply to Australian Government procurements. These changes will take effect from 1 July 2014.

These arrangements create different requirements for suppliers to Government than those required in the private sector. The requirements under the Government’s mainstream procurement framework (such as the Commonwealth Procurement Rules) and the mainstream workplace relations framework will continue to apply.

The changes involve revoking the Fair Work Principles, which currently apply to all procurements above $80,000. The Fair Work Principles require tenderers to complete a declaration of compliance with the Fair Work Act 2009. Existing Government procurement policies and processes that require decision makers to ensure tenderers comply with laws and policies of the Commonwealth, including the Fair Work Act 2009, are not affected.

The Fair Work Principles also create specific obligations for tenderers from the cleaning services industry and those that manufacture textile, clothing and footwear products. These include the requirement for textile, clothing and footwear manufacturers to have accreditation under the Homeworkers Code of Practice administered by Ethical Clothing Australia, a joint union-industry non-government organisation. The Department’s funding agreement with Ethical Clothing Australia will also cease on 30 June 2014 to coincide with the end of this regulatory requirement.

The Fair Work Ombudsman investigates and prosecutes any allegations of underpaid wages or breaches of the Fair Work Laws.

As well as the cleaning services provisions in the Fair Work Principles, the associated Commonwealth Cleaning Services Guidelines (a legislative instrument under the Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997) will also cease on 30 June 2014. Cleaning services providers tendering for Government work from 1 July 2014 will still be required to comply with all relevant workplace laws and the Modern Awards set by the Fair Work Commission.

Queries in relation to the revocation of the Fair Work Principles and the Commonwealth Cleaning Services Guidelines may be directed to the Fair Work Principles mailbox at:

Some of the country's lowest-paid workers could lose almost a quarter of their weekly wages under changes quietly introduced by the Abbott government.
Thousands of workers will be hit by the changes, which will strip between $172 and $225 a week from the pockets of full-time contract cleaners who work in government buildings.
The changes are among the 9500 regulations to go under Prime Minister Tony Abbott's red tape ''repeal day'' on Wednesday.
Buried in more than 50,000 pages of regulations and acts of parliaments to be scrapped is the revelation the government will abolish the Commonwealth Cleaning Services Guidelines for cleaners employed on government contracts from July 1.
The regulations are a form of collective bargaining introduced by Labor that lift the wages of workers hired by businesses that win government cleaning contracts, by between $4.53 and $5.93 an hour above the minimum wage. This brings their weekly wage from $664 to $836 for a 38-hour week for level 1, and from $724 to $950 a week for level 3 workers.
United Voice, the union representing cleaners, would not comment on the changes before consulting its members. It is understood the union was not aware of the changes and is trying to negotiate with contractors and the government in an attempt to mitigate the effects on its members.
Labor introduced the Cleaning Services Guidelines in 2011 to tackle the exploitation of vulnerable workers in the contract cleaning industry. A 2010 Fair Work Ombudsman audit of cleaning contractors found that 40 per cent of audited businesses did not comply with workplace laws. It recovered almost $500,000 for 934 underpaid workers…..

1 comment:

John Fraser said...


Apparently Australians voted to pay more taxes.

To make life harder for youth.

To make life harder for the aged.

To make life harder for the poor.

Why else would they have voted for the moron currently in The Lodge ?