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.
“The government has been stung into action and is announcing Ministerial-level discussions about how to address worker exploitation of visa-holders in Australia,” Mr Bandt said.
“Although belated, this is a good start. However the real question will be whether the government is prepared to go after employers with the same fervour that they’ve gone after unions.”
“Since this government has come to office, we’ve had a several pieces of legislation and a multimillion dollar Royal Commission targeting unions, but we haven’t had the same level of scrutiny applied to employers who are clearly doing the wrong thing.”
“Today the government is announcing a set of discussions, but before these have even started they’ve said they will not legislate changes until after the next election.”
“This is not good enough. We need legislative changes now to stop the kind of exploitation that we’ve seen happening in 7-Eleven from happening in stores all across the country.”
“If they government is serious about cracking down on worker exploitation, they will get behind my bill that would go some way to preventing this 7-Eleven style of exploitation from happening again.”
Media contact: Adam Pulford, 0429 109 054