Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union

 

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Why we support Labor in 2019

Over the past 2 years we’ve seen hundreds of thousands of people march through the streets of Melbourne and other major cities to Change the Rules, to demand that the Federal Government stop playing politics with our lives, and to fix the broken industrial relations system..

We need to change the Government. We need to Change the Rules.

To do this, every Australian worker needs you to use your vote wisely, and vote for the only party that is putting workers first, the Australian Labor Party.

To help our members understand our reasons why we're putting our support behind the Australia Labor Party, we outlined some of the key policies they've put forward that we support.

 

Secure Jobs

Labor are committed to ensuring the future of jobs in Australia are fair, well paid, and secure for all Australians. As part of Labor’s National Platform, not only have they committed to secure jobs, but they have outlined the challenges and their priorities for providing opportunities for people transitioning to work, improving participation for parents, carers and people with disabilities, improved participation for people with Aboriginal and Torres Straight Island backgrounds, and investing in skills and social mobility.

More specifically, Labor believes that decent pay and conditions are critical to growing and maintaining our economy and will actively work to support fair wages and conditions.

Labour Hire

Labor have committed to establishing a national labour hire licensing scheme to regulate the labour hire industry and ensure that minimum legal standards are met. This will be modelled off the Victorian scheme that has already been brought in by the Victorian Government. Labor will also legislate to guarantee that labour hire workers receive the same pay and conditions as directly employed workers doing the same work. Labor will not accept the abuse of fixed term contracts of employment.

 

Wage Growth

One of the primary concerns for many Australians is how wage growth isn’t keeping up with the cost of living. Under a Labor Government, we will see economic reforms that will restore the link between effort and reward, boosting wages and productivity and delivering a more equal share of national wealth for all those whose hard work helps create it.

Penalty Rates

Labor have committed to reversing the cuts to penalty rates in the first hundred days of Government.

Living Wage

Labor is committed to a minimum wage that provides a living wage and will maintain or improve the relative living standards of low paid workers.

 

Union Values

At the core of what Labor are promising, is the ability for workers, through their union or otherwise, to collectively organise, bargain and be represented in matters of workplace rights. Labor will ensure Australia’s workplace relations system is fair and balanced, so that workers have the capacity to bargain for better wages and conditions.

Labor will ensure that our workplace laws provide the clear right for workers to communicate and meet with their union without interference and to be represented and participate in any workplace matter which affects them. Labor will ensure delegates are able to organise and effectively represent workers, including paid training leave. Labor will work with trade unions and employers to ensure due respect for workers’ rights to join a union without hindrance or discrimination and using modern payment methods.

Abolishing the ABCC

Labor have promised to abolish the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC). The appropriate body to regulate registered organisations is the Fair Work Commission. Labor will abolish the Registered Organisations Commission, with serious contraventions of regulatory laws by registered organisations referred to ASIC for investigation and prosecution.

 

Education

Labor will implement a properly funded national needs-based and sector-blind school funding model consistent with the original Review into School Funding recommendations that ensures disadvantaged schools get the biggest funding increases in the shortest time. We will work with the States and Territories to ensure all schools operate at a resource standard that meets the needs of their students. This extends to vocational training, ensuring we have world-class quality courses teaching the next generation the skills Australia needs to prosper.

Labor have also committed to reversing the freeze on university places by 200,000, allowing more Australians to gain the education they deserve that will give them a brighter future.

Apprenticeships

Labor have committed a $1 billion package for TAFE and vocational education including $200m for facilities, $380m to create 100,000 fee free places, and $330m to deliver 150,000 apprenticeship subsidies in areas with skills shortages.

 

Environment

Labor will deliver on Australia’s international obligations including Sustainable Development, to protect biodiversity, to protect heritage, restore landscapes, control plastic pollution and improve air quality and water quality to protect human health and productivity. Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. For development to be sustainable, it needs to meet the test of the triple bottom line: Social sustainability, ecological sustainability and economic sustainability. Environment institutions will have a remit to promote our international obligations including sustainable development.

Climate Change

Labor will create a vibrant, clean technology industry in this country and pursue the enormous future job opportunities in new technologies and clean energy. These opportunities are not limited to the generation of electricity and include the supply chains up and down stream of a strong renewable industry, as well as the technical and engineering expertise a strong renewable energy sector promotes.

Labor is proposing vehicle emissions standards “in line with” 105 grams of CO2 pollution per kilometre, which is the same as the US. The standard is imposed on car retailers (not manufacturers), which means car dealers will have to offset sales of high-emissions vehicles with sales of low-emissions vehicles. Coupled with this, Labor is setting targets for the take up of electric vehicles. It wants a national EV target of 50% of new sales by 2030, and a government fleet target of 50% of new sales by 2025, and it will also allow businesses to claim deductions if they buy EVs valued at more than $20,000.

Renewable Energy

Labor have committed in their National Platform, to grow the electricity sector beyond 2020 to deliver at least 50% of electricity generation from renewable sources by 2030.

 

Local procurement

Labor will support Buy Australian programs and initiatives, consistent with our international obligations. Labor will adhere to a national interest test for government procurement policy by considering whole-of-life costs and ensure procurement policies take into account the direct and indirect economic benefits of buying locally, including estimated taxation revenues, employment opportunities and industrial capability as detailed in the recent changes to the Commonwealth Procurement Rules. This will be supported by requirements to collect all relevant data, not enter trade agreements that would undermine local procurement, provide clearer guidelines for establishing economic benefit, wider dissemination of procurement guidelines within the public service.

Regional jobs and procurement

Labor will support growth and economic development in regional Australia, including through City Partnerships, public procurement and infrastructure investments to support economic activity in regional centres.

Labor will provide a regional services guarantee that improves services for regional Australians, delivers a net growth in permanent jobs in regional cities and provides a framework for any future service improvements and regional job creation through a balanced approach to public and private sector decentralisation.

 

Superannuation

Labor will lower the annual non-concessional contributions cap to $75,000. By lowering the annual non-concessional contributions cap to $75,000, Labor will ensure the carry-forward allowance remains generous enough to accommodate the kind of one-off contributions middle and low income taxpayers make.

Labor will further lower the High-Income Superannuation Contribution threshold to $200,000 whereby High-Income earners would have to pay 30 per cent tax on their superannuation contributions, rather than 15 per cent.

 

Investments

Labor will abolish negative gearing for investors who buy existing houses from January 2020. Investment properties bought before then will still attract negative gearing, as will investments in new properties.

They will also halve the capital gains tax discount for investment properties purchased after January 2020.

Franking credits

End cash rebates for excess franking credits, preventing self-funded retirees receiving refunds when they do not pay tax that year, to raise an estimated $10.7bn over four years. The measure exempts pensioners and people with pre-existing self-managed super funds.

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