Ai Group made a submission in response to the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations (DEWR) consultation paper on ‘Employee-like’ forms of work and stronger protections for independent contractors (Consultation Paper).

The reforms being proposed are radical. They have the potential to be a catalyst for significant adverse consequences for the ‘employee like workers’ they are intended to assist as well as for the parties that engage them and the broader community that benefits from, and indeed has come to rely upon, the services provided through the kinds of contracting and commercial arrangements that may be impacted by the proposed reforms. It is crucial that there is ongoing and meaningful engagement with industry and its representatives in the development of any regulatory response proposed. Engagement over the high-level concepts and proposals raised in the consultation process should be the start of a much more detailed and comprehensive process.

The Consultation Paper states that:

  1. The Government intends to give the Fair Work Commission (FWC) the power to set minimum standards for workers in ‘employee-like’ forms of work, including the gig economy.
  2. The Government is considering allowing the FWC to set fair minimum standards to ensure the road transport industry is safe, sustainable and viable; and
  3. The Government intends to amend relevant legislation to give workers the right to challenge unfair contractual terms.

Ai Group’s views on the issues raised in the consultation paper are set out in this submission.

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