Casual employment needs to be given the green light

07 Dec 2020 |

Federal Parliament needs to send a message this week to encourage employers to create jobs and hire casuals by dispelling concerns around double dipping claims and the definition of casual employment.

The recent Federal Court decision in Workpac v Rossato intensified the uncertainty regarding the engagement of casuals and called into question the employment of hundreds of thousands of Australians, particularly young people, students, parents and carers.

ACCI urges the Parliament to support measures in the upcoming Industrial Relations Omnibus legislation which will end the uncertainty around casual employment.

“Hiring casuals has become too risky and confusing, particularly as a result of double dipping claims which have surfaced since the Federal Court’s decision in Workpac,” ACCI CEO James Pearson said.

“Job creation in this country will rely upon Parliament sending a clear message to employers on the definition of a casual employee, as well as blocking both retrospective and prospective double dipping claims that could cost employers close to $40 billion.

“ACCI participated in all five of the Attorney-General’s working groups which informed this industrial relations legislation. We presented the case for a reliable and certain definition of a casual to make sure businesses didn’t need to go off to court to determine who is and who is not a casual employee.

“Small and family businesses don’t have the money, resources, legal support or time to spend away from their businesses to regularly turn to the courts to dispute which of their employees is or is not a casual.

“A definition which is unclear is useless for small and family businesses at a time when we need them to be hiring casuals, particularly during the holidays and for recent school leavers.

“With over 300,000 young Australians leaving school at this time of the year, it is vital that employers will be able to offer casual jobs without the risk of unexpected and unfair claims down the track.

“Casual employment is not just a part of seasonal periods each year – it will be crucial to our continued growth out of recession and the risk of future lockdowns and sudden disruption of markets.”

Marie Hogg

Senior Adviser - Media

P  |  0431 299 518

E  |  [email protected]

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