The ACTU has released a new paper which argues that most casual workers get nowhere near the 25% loading due to them, instead receiving a "modest wage premium" of 4% to 5% more than permanent employees.
As the mining union prepares to ramp-up its campaign for a "just transition" for workers whose future is disrupted by climate change, its leader has warned the Labor Party that to take power at the next election, it must win the Central Queensland seats that contain thousands of coal mining and power workers.
With the Senate set as early as today to pass the Turnbull Government's income tax changes that include substantial reductions for high-income earners, the ACTU has today released a critique of the proposals to cut corporate and personal income tax that it says will further increase inequality.
The ACTU will today release a jobs policy that calls for an end to public sector wage caps and pay freezes, along with calling time on the use of "illegitimate" fixed-term contracts in government jobs.
Expanding on its theme that the wages system is "broken", the ACTU will seek to change workplace laws so workers and unions can bargain "where the power is" across industries and franchised employers, rather than being limited to the enterprise level.
A combination of "bargaining electorates" and sector-based agreements could help propel union density past 50% within five years and make employers compete on productivity and quality rather than labour costs, according to a paper delivered at the AIRAANZ conference in Canberra.
More than 27% of public administration, defence, community services and utility workers belong to a union compared with less than 10% in mining and construction, while those of retirement age are significantly more likely to be members than those under 25, according to new research.