Prime Minister Morrison made it clear in his speech today that despite refusing to discuss workers’ rights during the election campaign, his Government’s first objective when parliament resumes next week will be to introduce the Ensuring Integrity bill, a roll-back of the basic rights of working people which has no equivalent in the western world.
In addition, he has asked employers to tell his new Minister Christian Porter what further rights should be taken off workers.
The EI bill would give the Minister, employers, or any other party with a ‘sufficient interest’ the power to intervene in the running and work of unions, disqualify people from union leadership, block union mergers and deregister unions.
The Ensuring Integrity Bill adds to what is already a highly regulated union movement and goes further than any other western democracy in interfering in democratic workers organisations.
As stated by ACTU President Michele O’Neil:
“The Morrison Government insisted that it had no plans to reduce workers’ rights during the campaign despite constant questions from unions and the media.
“Now we see the truth, he has called on business to deliver his Minister a wishlist and has dusted off previously failed legislation to attack unions.
“The first order of business should be acting to tackle low wage growth and stopping penalty rates being cut, but instead they are focused on attacking working people and taking away even more rights.
“The right of workers to organise, and for members to democratically run their unions is an internationally recognised human right. Like a free press, free trade unions are essential checks on the powerful in any democracy. Every single worker benefits from the work of unions, attacking unions is another way of attacking every worker’s rights.
“Working people need stronger and better rights at work by only listening to the views of big business representatives you can bet Scott Morrison will be hearing the exact opposite.