Qld couriers to have set pay, conditions

·2-min read

Queensland gig couriers and truckies could soon have set pay and conditions under proposed state laws.

A parliamentary committee is set to hold public hearings on a bill tabled by Industrial Relations Minister Grace Grace on Thursday.

The bill will ensure all Queensland workers, including gig couriers such as food delivery drivers and truckies, have access to entitlements equal to or better than those available under federal laws.

Minimum conditions for all independent courier drivers would also be set by the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission.

The proposed laws will also ensure that equal pay for women is part of all collective bargaining agreements and will redefine sexual harassment or sex and gender-based harassment as misconduct.

When hearing unfair dismissal cases, the state's industrial relations watchdog would have to consider if an individual engaged in sexual harassment to determine if their dismissal was "harsh, unjust or unreasonable".

Ms Grace's bill will also ban organisations from representing workers if they aren't registered with the Industrial Relations Act.

She said it would end confusion between employers and workers about groups that not registered as employee or employer organisations under industrial laws, but are incorporated under association laws.

"This follows the emergence of self-proclaimed entities promoting industrial representation capabilities without adhering to the strict regulatory requirements ... and not being subject to the same level of reporting, accountability or democratic processes," she told parliament on Thursday.

Organisations found to be "misrepresenting an entity's registration status or its ability to exercise rights" would face fines of up to $3722.

The Queensland Industrial Relations Commission could also declare an organisation ineligible for registration to represent workers under the IR Act.

The move is understood to be a move against Red Unions, which became prominent due to their campaigns against COVID-19 vaccine mandates.

The Nurses Professional Association of Queensland and the Teachers Professional Association of Queensland have links to current and former members of the opposition Liberal National Party.

The Queensland Labor Party and its affiliated unions have accused the Red Unions of being fake unions.

The NPAQ has been trying to gain trade union status after the state's industrial relations commission found in a case last year its corporate status was inconsistent with a registered union, so its advocate didn't have workplace rights or protections.

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