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On-Demand Report recommends protections for workers in Gig Economy

Jul 31, 2020 | News

The report into the gig economy released recently by the Victorian Government reveals workers in the gig economy sector have been pushed further into insecure work and are increasingly turning to the gig economy and having to work multiple jobs to make ends meet.

It is known that gig economy workers such as commercial passenger vehicle operators – are largely workers that English may not be their first language, who are being paid significantly below the national minimum wage and do not have safe working conditions, receive no superannuation, no holiday pay, no sick pay, no penalty rates, no maternity leave and there are questions who is responsible for WorkCover payments.

Those in the gig economy have gone without the protections that other working people in Victoria expect and receive. It is time to change laws to ensure gig economy workers receive fair pay and safe working conditions.

Disappointingly this report fails to address the impact by the gig economy on an industry and those workers in it, that have been treated so unfairly, those in the taxi and hire car industry, these Victorian transport workers where the Government set maximum fares, safety standards and have onerous reporting requirements imposed upon them and are forced to operate with conditions that their competitors do not.

These workers also, receive no superannuation, no holiday pay, no sick pay, no penalty rates, and no maternity leave and there is questions for WorkCover obligations and they also earn an hourly wage that is below the minimum wage.

During this pandemic, we have seen first-hand why it is imperative that insecure workers have the benefit of paid sick leave. To avoid unnecessary community transmissions we have seen here in Victoria.

Mr Barton has long advocated for the taxi, hire car industries, for intervention into the gig economy to ensure that all workers in Victoria are paid a living wage, are safe at work, and have the ability to provide for their families.

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