Five government working groups will overhaul Australia's Industrial Relations system.
Five government working groups will overhaul Australia’s Industrial Relations system.

Australia’s national employment law system is set for modernisation in an overhaul which will include advice and guidance from the Australian Hotels Association (AHA), it was announced today.

Appointed by the Federal Government, the AHA will contribute to two working groups designed to reform an Industrial Relations system widely considered out-of-date.

It follows a government directive last month which saw Federal Attorney General and Minister of Industrial Relations, Christian Porter, to chair five working groups covering wide-ranging matters including Award Simplification and Compliance and Enforcement as well as Enterprise Agreements, Casual and Fixed-Term Employment and Greenfields Projects, with the AHA contributing directly to the first two.

Helping in the selection of the AHA were two recent IR successes including the addition of flexibility for employers and employees bound by the Hospitality Award in collaboration with the United Workers Union. The AHA also played a role in the creation of a ‘Flexible Part-Time’ definition in the Award which assisted casual employees to receive benefits associated with more permanent positions.

Australian Hotels Association National CEO, Stephen Ferguson.

AHA National CEO, Stephen Ferguson – who will represent the AHA on the Award Simplification panel – said the organisation welcomed the opportunity to contribute to a process which may deliver the most meaningful reform in many years.

“For decades, the AHA and its subsidiary, Tourism Accommodation Australia, has shown itself to be the sector’s leader as a progressive and pragmatic peak industry organisation when it comes to industrial relations,” he said.

“The Federal Government knows we have a proven ability to negotiate fair and reasonable with all stakeholders.

“With much of our industry’s workforce employed under the Hospitality Award, the AHA is heavily invested in ensuring we get this right, for the long-term benefit of employers, employees and the broader economy,” Ferguson added.

AHA Director of Legal and Industrial Affairs, Philip Ryan, will sit on the Compliance and Enforcement Working Group.