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Thursday, 4 April 2019
Page: 14811

Ms O'DWYER (HigginsMinister for Women and Minister for Jobs and Industrial Relations) (10:26): Since my colleague opposite, the member for Gorton, has decided to speak on this, I might just thank him and the opposition for agreeing to the government's bill. It is very important that workers' entitlements are protected. That is what the government is doing. It's quite wrong when the Australian taxpayer is asked to pick up the tab because of a deliberate structural decision made by unscrupulous employers who are seeking to shift their responsibilities to someone else. We will not stand for that. We have noticed that there has been an explosion in claims under the FEG scheme. We will not stand for it. We will not see the Australian taxpayer ripped off and we will not see workers ripped off.

I'd like to thank those opposite for the constructive manner in which they have looked at this bill. Where the amendments of the opposition will do no harm, we will not stand in the way of those amendments. We have made some improvements to the bill, and I thank those opposite for their cooperation in relation to those matters. As a result, we can come together, stand together and say that this is indeed a bill that will improve the lives of many millions of Australians.

Question agreed to.