Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash

Shadow Attorney-General

Shadow Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations

Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate

Senator for Western Australia


27 JUNE 2023


The Albanese Labor Government has today been caught out trying to fool the Australian people by proposing to change the name of its signature industrial relations policy, but not the policy itself.

It is absurd for the Albanese Government to think changing the name of its signature Industrial Relations policy will fool anyone.

Shadow Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations Senator Michaelia Cash said:

“Tony Burke seems to think he is in an episode of ‘the Hollowmen’. He knows the Labor Government’s ‘Same Job, Same Pay’ policy is deeply unpopular within the Australian community but instead of abandoning the policy and upsetting Labor’s union donors, he is merely proposing to change the name.”

“The Government’s failed IR reform doesn’t need rebranding it needs to be completely abandoned. A name change doesn’t change bad policy,’’ she said.

“All Minister Tony Burke is doing is trying to road test a new marketing strategy for what is a terrible policy that business groups across the country are united against,’’ Senator Cash said.

“Australians are smarter than falling for a slogan,’’ she said.

“Rather than coming up with new slogans Mr Burke should listen to the feedback he is getting from business during the consultation process – then he should go back to the drawing board,’’ Senator Cash said.

“Labor talks about closing labour hire loopholes – but in reality, the Albanese Government want to crush the labour hire sector in Australia, despite the fact it only accounts for about 2% of the nation’s workforce. This would be hugely disruptive because it stops businesses being able to access the services, they need to address problems,’’ Senator Cash said.

“Businesses have said Labor’s proposed changes will cost thousands of jobs every year and strip the rights of labour hire workers to negotiate their own pay and conditions,’’ she said.

“Mr Burke has always been more interested in pandering to his government’s union paymasters than doing the best thing by businesses and their workers,’’ Senator Cash said.

“Australians are sick and tired of the Labor Party and their union mates demonising those Australians who choose to undertake diverse forms of work, which provide options for people with different circumstances and different needs,’’ she said.