House debates

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Statements by Members

Minister for Employment

1:51 pm

Photo of Lisa ChestersLisa Chesters (Bendigo, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

We quite often talk about how we're moving to a cashless society. I say bring it on, because after last night in Senate estimates we know that Senator Cash misled the Senate estimates at least five times about her office's involvement in the AWU AFP raids. But this minister has form. This is the same minister that knowingly appointed the ABCC commissioner, Nigel Hadgkiss, who's now had to resign. She appointed him, knowing he had broken the law. He had actually breached the Fair Work Act. This was at the same time as the minister was presiding over some horrible situations going on in workplace health and safety.

Since the reintroduction of the ABCC, whilst this minister has been in charge, construction deaths, sadly, are up. This time last year they were at 21; today they are at 27. Wage theft is now a growing problem in our workplaces. Celebrity chefs are getting away with ripping their staff off, underpaying them by $2.6 million. Worker exploitation is out of control. This minister should resign, not just because of what she has done in Senate estimates but because of what she is doing in her role as minister across the workspace.