Gina Rinehart, Government announcements, Hancock Prospecting, News

Senate passes ‘same job, same pay’ split

The Federal Government’s Closing Loopholes Bill has been successfully split in a bid to pass uncontentious and broadly supported protections, the ABC reported.

Senators Jacqui Lambie and David Pocock led the charge to split the Bill into four separate bills relating to family and domestic violence leave, PTSD, silica management, and small business redundancy exemptions.

The split will still need to pass the lower house to come into effect.

Senator Lambie welcomed the outcome of the vote, expressing relief that the four elements were removed from the Bill.

“We have got the four bills through that we wanted split from the enormous monster bill of the IR which should never have been put in there in the first place,” she said.

Senator Pocock said the original bill was too big and that there is “a long way to run” before further changes could be voted on.

“[There are] 20 different schedules, four of them weren’t contentious… what we have done is split out the four things that have unanimous support,” he said.

“Yes, there is consensus forming around certain elements, but there are so many details that need to be nutted out and we have got to get them right.”

Employment and Workplace Relations Minister Tony Burke said the government will continue to pursue its own legislation to protect workers and lift wages.

“The government remains committed to delivering on our election promise to close the loopholes that are undermining wages,” he said.

Gina Rinehart’s Hancock Prospecting became the latest major to express concern over the proposed industrial relations reforms on Tuesday.

“If increased regulatory burdens cause new mining projects to be delayed or cancelled, Australia will be unable to satisfy the rising iron ore demand created by net zero targets,” Hancock Prospecting chief executive of group operations Gerhard Veldsman told the West Australian.

The four major elements of the Closing Loopholes Bill are:

  • criminalising wage theft
  • introducing minimum standards for workers in the gig economy
  • closing the forced permanent casual worker loophole
  • closing the labour hire loophole.
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