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Parliamentary inquiry into labour hire licensing required

The Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry welcomes the Victorian Parliament’s close scrutiny this week of the Labour Hire Licensing Bill 2017.

While the bill was passed in the Legislative Assembly in a vote on Thursday, the Coalition’s opposition to the bill is welcomed and signals an urgent need to re-examine this proposed scheme through a parliamentary inquiry.

Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chief Executive Mark Stone AM said there is already significant regulation of labour hire under existing laws. What we need is better enforcement of these laws, not a new licencing scheme that will cost jobs.

“Victorian Chamber members operating in the labour hire sector already put significant effort and resources into ensuring compliance with extensive legal requirements. They are very concerned about the financial and administrative burden of having to comply with this new scheme,” he said.

“The proposed scheme is heavy handed and cumbersome. It will impose significant fees on labour hire businesses to fund a new government authority and inspectors and will tie businesses up in red tape and reporting.”

The scheme also goes significantly further than what was recommended by the 2016 independent Victorian Inquiry into the Labour Hire Industry and Insecure Work, imposing licensing requirements on all labour hire firms, not just those in the meat, horticulture and cleaning industries.

This is why the Victorian Chamber is calling for an urgent parliamentary inquiry into the bill to examine the merits of the proposed scheme and how its costly impacts on business can be minimised.