Gig Economy: NSW Parliament Report

The Select Committee on the Impact of Technological and Other Change on the Future of Work and Workers in New South Wales has handed down their first report on their inquiry: “Impact of technological and other change on the future of work and workers in New South Wales First report – The gig economy”.

The report picks up evidence from the Australian Services Union about regulation in the NDIS and gig economy and issues a recommendation in support of portable entitlements.

ASU members have been calling for Portable Entitlements - this is critical, with almost 1 in 3 workers planning on leaving the disability sector this year.

Recommendation 4: That the NSW Government establish a portable entitlement scheme for gig and other precarious workers, in partnership with employers, unions and gig platforms.

The Report states:

The Australian Services Union supported the implementation of a portable entitlement scheme for all workers providing services under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), including those within the gig economy.

They argued it would resolve issues of 'wage suppression' and 'fraud' within the sector:

“Disability supports under the NDIS are priced by the National Disability Insurance Authority (NDIA) based on assumptions about the relevant minimum award pay rates. The problem is that there is no corresponding obligation for NDIS agencies to pass on to their workers the minimum rates of pay. So we see platform providers in particular undercutting the minimum wage and pocketing the difference, effectively ripping off people with disability and the taxpayer simultaneously. These problems can be solved via an enforceable safety net and a portable entitlement scheme in the NDIS. … Portable leave, especially isolation leave in the COVID world, is critical for all NDIS workers to access.”

- Natalie Lang, Australian Services Union (NSW & ACT Branch), 10 September 2021, p 30.

The full report is here

Every worker in the Community and Disability sectors should have paid time off work for holidays, breaks, long service and if you are unwell or caring for someone in your family.

Use the Find My Leave calculator to find out how much leave you could have if we had portable entitlements.

Workers in our sector often miss out on long service leave because of changes in funding and choices. ASU members are campaigning for ALL workers in our sector to have access to paid time off.

Portable entitlements will mean all community and disability workers have access to the same basic entitlements as other essential workers like nurses and teachers.

Portable entitlements mean that all workers can access entitlements like leave regardless of how they are employed, where they work, or if they change jobs. All community services workers get long service leave in the ACT, Victoria, and Queensland based on the years they have worked in the sector – not the years they have worked for a particular employer. This applies to casuals too.

Join the Workers Make a Difference Campaign for portable entitlements for all.