AHA to lead industry’s IR response

The Morrison Government has finalised the primary membership of the five industrial relations working groups tasked with finding ways to urgently regrow jobs lost as a result of COVID-19. AHA has been exclusively appointed “as the peak hospitality and accommodation industry to lead the sector’s contribution and guidance in two key working groups.[1]

The working groups comprise ten full-time members (five from employer and five from employee groups) and will tackle known problems within the IR system that are holding back Australia’s economic recovery.

Attorney-General and Minister for Industrial Relations, Christian Porter, noted members all had a clear understanding of how important the task in front of them was, especially to the 600,000 Australians who have lost their jobs in recent months.

“On top of those who’ve lost their jobs, there are millions more who have seen their work hours and pay-packets reduced due to COVID-19, and we owe it to them to work cooperatively through this process to deliver solutions that will get our country working again,” the Attorney-General said.

The AHA will be active on the Award Simplification and Compliance and Enforcement Working Groups, represented by AHA National CEO, Stephen Ferguson and AHA’s Director – Legal and Industrial Affairs Philip Ryan respectively.

Mr Ferguson noted AHA is “heavily invested in ensuring we get this right for the long term benefit of employers, employees and the broader economy,” when also noting “for decades the AHA and its subsidiary Tourism Accommodation Australia has shown itself to be the sector’s leader as a progressive and pragmatic peak industry organisation, when it comes to industrial relations.[2]

This announcement follows work AHA undertook “collaboratively with the United Workers Union to change the Hospitality Award in response to the COVID-19 crisis. This work included “increased flexibility for employers and employees,” including securing a flexible part time provision in the Hospitality Award, designed to move casual employees to more secure part time employment[3].”

The Compliance and Enforcement Working Group will ‘meet’ first on Monday 22 June, while the Award Simplification Group will convene the following week. 

References:

1,2 and 3 The Hotel Conversation: AHA appointed to lead IR reform in accommodation sector, June 15 2020

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