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Thursday, 13 August 2009
Page: 4967

Senator Abetz asked the Minister representing the Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, upon notice, on 17 June 2009:

During consideration of the Fair Work Bill 2009, did the Government make any representations about the appointment of specialist advisors for small and medium enterprises; if so, can details be provided of (a) what those representations were; and (b) the implementation of these representations, including: (i) the starting dates, (ii) the number advisors, and (iii) where they will be situated, including the state and city.

Senator Arbib (Minister for Employment Participation and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Government Service Delivery) —The Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations has provided the following answer to the honourable senator’s question:

As announced by the Deputy Prime Minister on 20 March 2009 the Government has agreed to establish a specialist information and assistance unit for small and medium size enterprises within the Office of the Fair Work Ombudsman.

The Small Business Education Unit will employ five highly skilled education officers and will be operational within 3 months of the commencement of the Office of the Fair Work Ombudsman.