Putting The Gig Economy Under The Microscope

15:09' 01-11-2018
The rights of workers in the new economy will be put under the microscope with the Andrews Labor Government’s Australian-first inquiry into the on-demand workforce and gig economy.

    Photo: The Age

    Minister for Industrial Relations Natalie Hutchins opened a forum at Parliament House on Monday to investigate the operation of the on-demand industry – also known as the gig economy.
    The forum heard from academics, unionists and employers across the on-demand sector, following widespread claims of workers being underpaid, poorly treated and wrongly classified.
    The forum was the first event of the Victorian Inquiry into the On-Demand Workforce, which will investigate the conditions of workers engaged under digital platforms.
    It will examine concerns about income security and minimum wages, lack of insurance, superannuation and other leave benefits and a lack of a level playing field for business.
    Chaired by former Commonwealth Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James, the inquiry is examining contracting arrangements and whether these are being used to avoid workplace laws and other statutory obligations in Victoria.
    It will review the application of workplace laws, including accident compensation, superannuation and health and safety to people in the gig economy and how workers are regulated internationally and interstate.
    It follows the findings of the Federal Select Committee on the Future of Work and Workers that workplace laws have failed to keep pace with the rise of the digital platforms.
    The issue was highlighted last month when food delivery company Foodora left Australia after the Fair Work Ombudsman began Federal Court action alleging the company had engaged in sham contracting.
    The inquiry is expected to deliver a final report to the Government in late 2019 and will be seeking public submissions from workers, digital platforms, industry, lawyers and academia.
    The Terms of Reference for the inquiry can be found at economicdevelopment.vic.gov.au/what-we-do.

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Article sourced from premier.vic.gov.au.

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