The Legislative Council have this week passed legislation to regulate labour hire in Victoria. The Labour Hire Licencing Bill 2017 (Vic) was passed by 21 votes to 19, with minor amendments to be returned to the Legislative Assembly for endorsement.
The introduction of labour hire licencing regulation in Victoria follows similar legislative changes in Queensland and South Australia in an attempt to address growing concerns surrounding the mistreatment and exploitation of workers by rogue labour hire service providers.
Under the legislation, a licencing system will be established with the aim of providing greater regulation of the provision of labour hire services. Civil penalties are imposed on providers and users of labour hire services who obtain these services from anyone other than a licenced provider of labour hire services.
The new legislation also provides for the establishment of a Labour Hire Licencing Authority and the office of Labour Hire Licencing Commissioner, where a voluntary code of practice will be developed for the labour hire industry. These authorities will also provide regulatory support and appoint inspectors tasked with monitoring compliance in the labour hire service industry in Victoria.
It is anticipated that these new changes including the introduction of stricter licencing requirements will promote change towards a fairer labour hire industry in Victoria.
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This article was written with the assistance of Jordan Nichols, Graduate Lawyer