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What a small business advocate thinks is ‘ridiculous’ about changes to casual work

3AW Mornings
Article image for What a small business advocate thinks is ‘ridiculous’ about changes to casual work

The federal government is set to overhaul industrial relations laws this week, but a small business advocate says one the changes is ‘ridiculous’.

The federal government will this week introduce a bill which requires employers to offer permanent work to casual workers who work regular hours for 12 months.

CEO of the Council of Small Business of Australia, Peter Strong, welcomed the proposed changes, but he say one change is “ridiculous”.

“If I employ a part-timer, say 10am until 3pm on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday … if I ask that person ‘Can you work on Thursday?’… The employer is supposed to pay overtime penalty rates for that part-time worker to work on Thursday, which means it’s cheaper to employ a casual than it is to offer your own part-time worker extra hours,” he told Tony Jones, filling in for Neil Mitchell.

“That’s ridiculous.

“They’re the things we’ve got to fix.”

Mr Strong said he expects the number of casuals who accept permanent employment to be very low.

“I think, in one award, two per cent of casuals who are offered permanent work accept permanent work,” he said.

“Most casuals want to be casual.”

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