Self Employed Australia –


We’ve alerted you in the past to the Albanese government’s plan to deny people the right to be self-employed. It’s an attack upon your basic freedom to decide how you earn your income. That attack plan is now unfolding.

The Department of Employment and Workplace Relations (DEWR) has released a consultation paper on the implementation of Labor’s plan. We’re preparing a detailed submission (due on 12 May). Legislation is set for the second half of this year.

Be very clear. We totally reject this agenda. It’s bad on many fronts. We’ll explain the multiple problems progressively over the following weeks.

We have started talking to Senators and MPs about why this is so bad and should be stopped. We’ll be very actively pushing to defend the right to be self-employed.

We’ve prepared a summary of the DEWR consultation paper. We’ve tried to reflect what they are saying accurately.

In broad summary, Labor’s plan is to:

  • Treat the commercial contract used by self-employed people as an employment contract.
  • Regulate self-employed people through the Fair Work Commission, thus creating conflict with commercial law and regulation by the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission. The DEWR papers says that this will be done on a limited selective basis. But those limits are as yet unknown.

Frankly, we see our campaign as perhaps the most important one that we have conducted in SEA’s 24-year history. We must attempt to stop this.

We argue that Labor’s plan is a recipe for commercial contract confusion and uncertainty. We find the consultation paper to be a confused hotchpotch itself, as it is forced to weave a path through well-established legal, regulatory and policy principles and practices. This is so because the plan would generate conflict with those principles and practices on a wide scale.

At this stage we seek to understand the detail of Labor’s agenda. The difficulty is that the agenda is wrapped up in seemingly good intentions which mask its true consequences.

Many people have asked us for more information. We suggest that you read our summary first and see what you think. We’ll release our analysis progressively.