Documents obtained by the Opposition under Freedom of Information show that the review of the Fair Work Act serves the political needs of a Labor Government rather than looking to fix the practical problems with the act. Despite requests from the Office of Best Practice Regulation that the Terms of Reference should include productivity, take a look at the costs incurred through bargaining, disputes, training and delays. Further, the OBPR posed questions for possible inclusion including: "are there any areas where the act seems to achieve its aims, but the inpractice implementation is creating perverse real outcomes?". The OBPR also asked for the review to 'capture the impact of the legislation on employees, employers, communities and governments' as well as the broader economy. "This willful rejection shows that this so-called 'independent' review is designed for political outcomes rather than establishing the practical problems and addressing them," Shadow Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations Senator Eric Abetz said today." "Despite Bill Shorten dismissing the valid concerns that the Coalition raised, it is now clear that warnings were provided to the Government some months in advance of the Terms of Reference being released." "It's clear from the documents that Minister Wong was also advised of the concerns prior to the Cabinet meeting to consider the Terms of Reference." "If Labor were serious about listening to the valid concerns about the Fair Work Act, they would have had a fair dinkum review with a genuine Terms of Reference seeking to find the genuine impact on of the Fair Work Act - not pointing the stakeholders and reviewers in a particular direction," Senator Abetz concluded.
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Authorised by Sam McQuestin, Level 2/24 Murray Street, Hobart TAS 7000 | Updated 17 May 2013 | Admin