Important step on rights for gig workers

The Albanese Labor Government will legislate to give the Fair Work Commission new powers to set minimum standards for gig workers.

The Government congratulates the Transport Workers’ Union and Uber on striking what is a significant deal that recognises gig workers need more rights.

We don’t want Australia to be the sort of country that allows workers to earn less than the minimum wage or be subjected to dangerous, unregulated conditions.

Australians want the flexibility and the convenience of the gig economy but they don’t want the people on the other end of the app getting ripped off or dying on our roads.

Without proper regulation, even if a platform tries to do the right thing by their workers – as Uber has today – the risk is they will be undercut by a rival that turns up on the market.

That’s why the Government will extend the powers of the Fair Work Commission to be able to set minimum pay and standards for gig workers. It is the appropriate independent body to do this job.

This will deliver a national approach that gives the Commission the scope and flexibility it needs to deal with “employee-like” forms of work.

The previous government said regulating the gig economy was “too complicated”. Well today’s agreement shows that’s not the case at all. They just couldn’t be bothered to act.

Now we have a Labor Government that has signalled it will act and the industry has come to the table.

The Government has already begun work to develop legislation and we look forward to working with the union movement and the gig platforms to deliver this important change.

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