Bill's Media Releases

Abbott will make it easy to cut penalty rates: business

A peak business body has today confirmed what all Australian workers already knew – that the unfair individual contracts at the heart of Tony Abbott’s workplace relations policy will put penalty rates at risk.

 These revelations will send a shiver down the spine of every Australian retail worker.

 The Liberal Party’s policy document clearly outlines their intention to detach Individual Flexibility Arrangements (IFAs) from Enterprise Agreements and undermine the Better Off Overall Test by allowing ‘non-monetary benefits’.

 It has been reported today that the Retailers Association will look to use Tony Abbott’s proposed changes to workplace relations to extend trading hours without paying penalty rates to employees.

 Tony Abbott needs to come clean on secret deals he has done which will see wages and conditions stripped away, important protections undermined and parents punished if they need to care for their kids.

 At its core, the Liberal Party believe in driving down wages and conditions through unfair individual contracts.

 There are around 690,000 Australians working as sales assistants and sales persons who rely on penalty rates to make ends meet.

 Under Work Choices, 100 per cent of Australian Workplace Agreements (AWAs) ripped away at least one so called ‘protected award condition’. Things like penalty rates, allowances, rest breaks and public holidays.

 Under Work Choices, 63 per cent of AWAs ripped away penalty rates; 64 per cent ripped away leave loading and 40 per cent cut rest breaks.

 Australian retail workers know the Liberals can’t be trusted on workplace relations.

 In contrast, under the Gillard Government penalty rates cannot be stripped away by unfair individual contracts.