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New scheme provides improved safety for Queensland workers

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Queensland Government introduces mandatory labour hire licensing scheme

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Slater and Gordon has welcomed the Queensland Government’s decision to introduce a mandatory labour hire licensing scheme in order to both protect employees from exploitation and improve workplace safety.

It establishes a mandatory licensing scheme in order to promote the integrity of the labour hire industry. 

A licence will be granted once a labour company demonstrates that it is fit and proper to provide labour hire services.

Senior Slater and Gordon Lawyer Tran Truong said the introduction of the scheme would lead to improvements by labour hire providers across the state.

“This will provide a safer workplace for workers because the legislation requires licensed labour hire providers to pass a fit and proper person test,” Ms Truong said.

“It also demands that they comply with all the relevant laws including workers’ compensation, wages and superannuation.

“For the worker, this means that they are entitled to be paid at least the minimum wage, a safe workplace, reasonable hours, rests breaks and time off work and be treated fairly and with respect and free from bullying and harassment and discrimination at work.

“This is an important step in ensuring safety and appropriate working conditions for all Queensland employees.”

Ms Truong said labor hire workers were traditionally at greater risk of being injured at work than regular employees because at times they received limited training and supervision for the work they performed.

“The scheme is aimed at protecting workers from unethical operators who fail to comply with the laws and imposes severe penalties for operators providing labour hire services without a licence,” Ms Truong said.

“It ensures that these organisations are more accountable for the workplaces they are creating for employees.”

Existing labour hire providers have until 15 June 2018 to apply for their licence, however they can continue to operate while their application is being considered, provided they have applied by this date.

Once registered, licensed labour hire providers will be listed on a public register at www.labourhire.qld.gov.au