Labor criticise Government’s TAFE bill

The Tasmanian Labor party have launched an attack on the Government’s TAFE Bill, calling it “an attack on the public sector”

Shadow Minister for Workplace Relations Sarah Lovell said the bill was a precursor for where the rest of the public service could go if the Liberals had their way.

“The Liberals’ TAFE bill is not about improving the institution for staff and students, it is a declaration of war on the public sector,” Ms Lovell said.

“This bill fundamentally undermines industrial relations for TasTAFE teachers and staff. The so-called guarantees from the government are hollow, and are only to meet their basic legal obligations.

“The government have ignored the concerns of staff throughout this entire process and they have ignored what has happened in other states where TAFE has been dismantled and commercialised.

“It leads to the question; which group will be next? If the Liberals can pass this anti-worker plan through Parliament which group of public sector workers will have their wages and conditions under attack next?”

Shadow Minister for TAFE Josh Willie said while much of the bill was the same as current legislation, the main difference was the changes to TAFE teachers and staff rights.

“No reform will be successful unless you take people with you, including your workforce, and throughout this process the government has treated them with disrespect and contempt,” Mr Willie said.

“Courses are accredited nationally, this bill won’t change that, what it will do is fundamentally change the TasTAFE workforce, with increased casualisation.   

“Under the government’s plan, quality training at TasTAFE will be dismantled and it will become a budget version of itself, this cannot be allowed to happen.”

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