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Workplace reforms to boost small business.

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Media Release The Hon Fran Bailey, MP

22 June 2005


The Governments proposal for a national unified workplace relations system will have wide-ranging benefits for small business operators and their employees by reducing the complexity and confusion of the current six separate legislative systems in operation.

“Workplace relations reforms will boost productivity, competitiveness and flexibility for Australia’s 1.2 million small businesses.” said Minister for Small Business and Tourism, Fran Bailey.

“Small business is in need of a workplace relations system that is flexible and responsive to the needs of small businesses, so they can get on with the job of doing business and adding to Australia’s prosperity - these vital reforms announced will place us in a strong position to achieve this” Fran Bailey said.

“Unfair dismissal laws are costing jobs due to the financial and administrative burden imposed by the existing unfair dismissal laws, and the Government’s proposed exemption from unfair dismissal laws for up to 100 employees will benefit small and medium businesses and be an important stimulus to employment growth in these sectors.” Fran Bailey said.

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) welcomed the proposed reforms by saying “It has the potential to kick-start a new round of productivity and employment growth in the private sector, and act as a foundation for higher living standards of families and for employment flexibility into the next decade.”

“The introduction of a new Australian Fair Pay and Conditions Standard to replace the existing ‘no disadvantage’ test will assist both small business employers and employees negotiate workplace agreements.”

Our proposal to deliver a simpler and more streamlined agreement process by allowing the Office of the Employment Advocate to approve agreements on lodgement is a key measure that will benefit small business operators in framing workplace agreements with their employees.

Media Contact: Carley Griffith 02 6277 7450 or 0419 840 452