ACTU should not distort the facts on casual employment

11 Apr 2022 |

The union movement’s rehashed casualisation scare campaign puts Australian small businesses and jobs at risk.

“This election, Australians deserve better than the ACTU’s false claims on job insecurity,” ACCI chief executive Andrew McKellar said.

“Industrial relations policy demands respect for the facts, not the distortion of them. Suggestions that casual employment makes up the lion’s share of jobs growth are just patently false.

The facts are:

  • The proportion of Australians working casually has remained stable at approximately 24 per cent for more than 25 years.  Casual employment is simply not growing no matter how often the ACTU claims otherwise.
  • With the jobless figure likely to dip below four per cent in coming months and employers facing chronic labour and skills shortages, more casual employees have options to seek to shift to full or part-time work than at any time since records began in the 1970s.
  • More casuals than ever before have legal rights to seek to convert to full or part-time work if they wish to, despite the ACTU opposing these rights early last year.
  • Ultimately, there are no secure jobs without secure, productive enterprises, particularly small businesses.  Keeping business doors open and Australians in work should be core to the workplace relations priority for any party wishing to govern.

“Certainty was restored to casual employment in March 2021 through a clear and reliable definition of casual employment,” Mr McKellar added.

“Australia needs practical, accessible options for casual work more than ever, particularly as businesses navigate the uncertainty of job creation, investment and recovering markets following the pandemic.

“The ACTU wants to redefine casual employment, destroying certainty and placing jobs for hundreds of thousands of Australians at risk.

“It defies belief that the ACTU would want to make it harder for young Australians to get a start in work. It would be the height of irresponsibility to reduce work opportunities for our young people, after two years of difficulty and uncertainty.

“The fact of the matter is unions don’t like casual employment because casuals are less likely to join unions.

“We need workplace relations laws that support jobs and back small businesses, not changes driven by union prejudices and self-preservation.

For more information:

Jack Quail | Media Adviser

P  |  0498 181 207

E  |  [email protected]

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