A rewarmed proposal for industrial relations reforms from a group representing massive multinationals would drive down wages and make it easier for big corporations to casualise the workforce.
The Minerals Council of Australia has dusted off the WorkChoices agenda of individual workplace contracts alongside proposals to drastically reduce working people’s power at work.
Under its plan, employers will be able to re-introduce individual contracts, tip all power to employers when bargaining, remove protections for job security and drive wages down even further.
The Council, a Coalition ally who spent millions electing former Prime Minister Tony Abbott and campaigned against the mining tax which would have benefited Australian schools and hospitals, represents the interests of multinational mining companies, many of which pay zero tax.
Quotes attributable to Australian Council of Trade Unions Secretary Sally McManus:
“The mining companies are the most powerful multinationals on our planet. Their greed knows no limits. If we were all working for $4 an hour with no job security whilst they paid no tax, it would still not be enough for them.”
“These mining companies, including BHP, Adani and Rio Tinto, make billions of dollars in profits — now they want to cut their workers’ wages and curtail workplace safety.”
“This plan is just an attempt to rebrand parts of their wish list that has already been rejected by the Australian people. The only people who can put limits on their greed is the Australian people. We need stronger workplace rights to ensure this occurs.”
“During the mining boom these companies had a license to print money yet they fought against paying tax, while they extracted our resources. The legacy of the boom for working people is a budget deficit, hollowed out job prospects and companies so powerful they keep demanding more and more."
“We have seen the normalisation of tax avoidance by massive corporations. Every Australian suffers as a result of the greed of tax dodging big business.”
Media contact: Antonia Acott 0418 793 885 or ACTU Media 03 9664 7315