Greens insecure work inquiry opportunity for PM to make up mind

Greens Deputy Leader and workplace relations spokesperson Adam Bandt MP says the Prime Minister needs to get on top of the growing problem of insecure work.

Speaking to a Hobart media conference with Greens Leader Christine Milne, Mr Bandt said it is good that the Prime Minister has acknowledged the problem but is disappointing to see Labor avoiding responsibility for action.

Mr Bandt said next year's Employment Committee inquiry into his private member's bill on tackling job insecurity will be an opportunity for Labor to make up its mind on action.

"Insecure work is ruining lives," Mr Bandt said.

"A growing number of Australian workers find themselves in "insecure" employment, such as long-term casual employment or rolling contracts. Too many Australian workers have little economic security and little control over their working lives. This makes it harder for them to plan their lives or commit to long term arrangements like getting a mortgage.

"Women are particularly affected, so this is also an issue of gender equality. Spain is the only developed country with more temporary workers than Australia and we have a huge problem."

"I hope the Prime Minister will use the inquiry into my bill as an opportunity to get on top of the problem and seriously consider backing the Greens' proposal for action on insecure work."

The House of Representatives Education and Employment Committee will conduct an inquiry into Mr Bandt's Fair Work Amendment (Tackling Job Insecurity) Bill 2012 early in the new year.

Mr Bandt's bill will implement a number of recommendations of the landmark ‘Lives on Hold' report, conducted by the former Deputy Prime Minister, Brian Howe, released by the ACTU in May. The ACTU will also hold a summit on insecure work in March.

3 December 2012