April 29, 2015

Labor again urges the Abbott Government to get on with the task of developing a new non-discriminatory wage assessment tool for thousands of workers with disability. 

Assistant Minister for Social Services, Mitch Fifield has applied for an extension to a Human Rights Commission exemption which expires today.


The Government has had a year to develop and finalise a new, fair assessment tool for workers with disability.


The Abbott Government needs to work with Australian Disability Enterprises (ADE’s) and show that it is making progress in developing a new non-discriminatory assessment tool.


It must ensure that wage setting arrangements are non-discriminatory and fair for all people with disability working in ADE’s.


Labor is committed to seeing workers with disability receive fair pay for the work that they do.


Labor also continues to call on the Abbott Government to agree to Labor’s fair amendments to the Business Services Wage Assessment Tool (BSWAT) Payment Scheme Bill 2014.


In its current form, the Government’s BSWAT Bill seeks to deny people with disability the right to pursue back pay against the Commonwealth through the courts. 


In June this year Labor will move to amend the Bill in the Senate to enable those people who choose to participate in the Government’s BSWAT scheme to also continue to participate in a class action that protects their common law rights.


Labor will not agree to the Bill in its current form, which prevents people with disability from exercising their legal rights to pursue to back pay.