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Licensing rule abolished for mine labour hire ‘exploiters’

BHP mine worker
Mine worker

Authorities have decided to ease regulation of companies that take advantage of outsourced resources workers.

Labour hire laws were recently amended to exempt firms that service South Australia’s mining industry from having to register for the Festival State’s labour hire licensing scheme.

The State Government will only require labour hire providers to be licensed, if they service industries where workers are most vulnerable to exploitation, including cleaning, trolley collection, horticulture processing and both meat and seafood processing.

Costs too much

State Attorney-General Vickie Chapman claimed previous rules cost labour hire firms too much in annual fees to comply with, and unlicensed companies would soon be able to service the resources sector.

“The reforms mean that a number of businesses who are currently licensed will no longer need to be,” she said in a public statement. “We have narrowed the scope of the scheme to address this and ensure we are targeting those industries with a higher risk of exploiting vulnerable workers.”

Chapman revealed the government has repeatedly tried to let labour hire firms service the mining industry without a permit.

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“Our previous attempts to repeal this law were unsuccessful and despite our best efforts to exempt businesses through other means, the legislation still did not hit the mark,” she said. “The law as originally passed was simply not workable and cast far too wide a net … we will act to ensure these new laws come into effect as soon as possible.”

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