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It's a shocker, an invitation to corruption. Go back to the drawing board, people!!

Monday, February 05, 2018

The Victorian government is looking to push its new Labour Hire Licensing Bill through Parliament, starting this week. The Bill is a legislative scam pretending to do one thing, but in reality will do something else—namely, open new doors to corruption in Victoria.

The Bill is supposedly a (long overdue) response to the exposé by the ABC's Four Corners programme on 4 May 2015 about the exploitation of migrant workers on some Australian farms. What Four Corners exposed was illegal migrants, working below legal pay rates and organized through some small, illegal 'labour hire' businesses.

The Four Corners' exposé prompted immediate investigation of the farmers and labour hire companies by the Fair Work Ombudsman, Federal Police, Immigration Department and Centrelink—as it should. What resulted was the closure of several of the small labour hire companies as well as the farmers being forced into agreements and binding undertakings with the Fair Work Ombudsman. In other words, a big clean-up occurred.

The Victorian Bill pretends to address the problem of such illegal worker exploitation by requiring labour hire businesses to be licensed through a new Victorian authority. But when the detail of the Bill is examined, it doesn't address potential problems in the farming sector but instead regulates all labour hire. The farming issue is an excuse for far-reaching legislation to control an entire sector. This includes professional recruitment companies, the entire consultancy and IT sector and much more.

It's a reintroduction of industrial relations laws by stealth into Victoria that will deliver huge power to unions. Victorian Labor is paying off its paymasters, the unions. But here's where the corruption trigger comes in.

Have you watched the history and skullduggery of the Coles-Shoppies union collusion? Coles and the union were caught out agreeing to underpay workers in order to give Coles a competitive advantage. We've praised the giant-killer, Coles shelf-filler for exposing this and forcing Coles and the union to behave. It was business–union dirty dealing.

This new Victorian Labour Hire Licensing Bill will open the door to the same sort of corruption. Think of what the Victorian mafia-like construction unions will do when they can exercise control over who can run construction labour hire! Watch the dirty anti-worker deals that will be done!

This reminds us a lot about Victorian Labor doing dirty deals with the fire fighters union to destroy volunteers in the Country Fire Authority.

We're preparing a full analysis and will release this shortly.
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