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Employment and Workplace Relations

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Greens amendments mean fairer job laws

The Australian Greens today welcomed reforms passed by the Senate in the Employment Services Reform Bill that will see much needed changes to the harsh Welfare to Work compliance regime.

"This Bill is particularly important given the current economic crisis and predicted increase in the number of people who may lose their jobs and be under greater financial stress," said Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

"The Greens moved a number of significant amendments that made the Bill fairer and addressed some of the flaws identified by the community sector."

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WA workers being left behind again

Western Australian workers are once again being betrayed by a state Liberal government that wants to play political games with their working lives, say the Australian Greens.

"With the mining boom coming to an end with massive job losses, this is a time when WA workers need job security and a robust safety net," said Greens Industrial Relations spokesperson Senator Rachel Siewert.

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Greens push end for 'unfair' AWAs and ITEAs

The Australian Greens will move amendments in the Senate to allow AWAs or ITEAs that do not meet the new "better off overall test" to be terminated.

"The Greens will put forward a simple and sensible amendment that will allow a worker on an existing AWA to ask Fair Work Australia to test it against the "better off overall test", and to be allowed to terminate an agreement that is proven to be unfair," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

"We will continue to argue for the absolute end of AWAs, not the current government position that allows AWAs to exist indefinitely."

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Employment Services Reform

The Welfare to Work regime introduced by the previous government was unfair, punitive and ineffective in providing an adequate safety net and genuinely engaging job seekers in securing appropriate work. The Australian Greens opposed that legislation vehemently, and we continue to oppose that punitive approach. The Australian Greens believe that, for the majority of those on welfare, the best outcome is for them to find meaningful employment.

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ABCC rallies show need for immediate change

The Australian Greens have put their support behind rallies against the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) in both Perth and Melbourne today, pointing to the immediate need for the abolition of the ABCC.

"The ABCC represents the former Government's Work Choices agenda at its most extreme, but the current ALP Government is yet to address these injustices," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

"The charges against CMFEU organiser Noel Washington have been dropped, but these unfair laws still exist, and we could see the same situation appear tomorrow."

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Senate Inquiry report supports end of ABCC

The Australian Greens today renewed calls for the abolition of the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC), following the release of the Senate Inquiry report into the Greens' Building and Construction Industry (Restoring Workplace Rights) Bill.

"The ABCC represents the Howard Government's Work Choices agenda at its most extreme, and yet the Rudd Government has dragged its heels in addressing these injustices," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

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Greens support union rally to abolish ABCC

The Australian Greens today put their support behind a rally and petition against the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) in Canberra today, pointing to the immediate need for the abolition of the ABCC.

"The ABCC represents the Howard Government's Work Choices agenda at its most extreme, and yet the Rudd Government has dragged its heels in addressing these injustices," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

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ALP IR is not forward enough with fairness - Greens

The Australian Greens believe many working Australians will feel let down by this legislation as not delivering on the promise to abolish Work Choices and to create a genuinely fair industrial relation system.

"There are huge gaps and problems with the Fair Work Bill. The unfair dismissal laws don't go far enough, too many restrictions on collective bargaining remain, continuing individual agreements and an umpire with limited powers are all cause for concern," said Senator Rachel Siewert.

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Rights of building workers must be respected - Greens

The Australian Greens today renewed their calls for the Australian Building & Construction Commission (ABCC) to be abolished, and voiced their concerns over the future state of industrial relations in Western Australia.

"WA State Commerce Minister Troy Buswell's threats of creating a replacement WA-specific ABCC clearly show how out of touch the WA Liberals truly are," said Australian Greens spokesperson on industrial relations Senator Rachel Siewert.

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