“It's about the passion”

From the Desk of the Executive Director

Ken Phillips is co-founder and Executive Director of Independent Contractors of Australia. He is a published authority on independent contractor issues and directs research on related commercial and trade practices issues. Through his numerous articles in newspapers and think-tank and academic journals, Ken is known for approaching issues from outside normal perspectives and is frequently sought out for media comment.

Unscrambling Gillard's OHS hash

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The Gillard government's attempts to harmonise Australia's work safety laws continues to crash around them. Even in South Australia, where the ALP holds government the failure is complete.

In late October, the South Australian parliament passed new OHS laws allegedly based around Gillard's harmonised model. But amendments made to the SA Labor government bill has resulted in a vastly different piece of legislation. It needs to be different. I last discussed the collapse of the harmonised OHS process late last year (The business of OHS disharmony) a process which has continued in gridlock since then.  More...


The black art of workers' compensation

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Some years ago if you asked small business operators what was the most difficult government regulation, the probable answer would have been tax administration. Today the answer would more likely be workers' compensation.

This view was apparently in evidence to the New South Wales Small Business Commissioner, Yasmin King, in her 'listening tour' of small business she conducted shortly after her appointment early this year.  More...


OHS law tied in knots

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

There's no doubt there's a significant battle occurring over national harmonisation of occupational health and safety laws. I've written extensively over why the laws are badly flawed, almost dangerous. But now the Scouting Association of New South Wales has blown the lid on the laws in a memo they've just released to their volunteer leaders. More...


The business of OHS disharmony

Monday, December 19, 2011

We can now say that the Gillard government's attempt to harmonise Australia's occupational health and safety laws appears destined for failure. The latest setback for Gillard is Queensland, the only state that has passed the model OHS laws in full. More...


Harmony lacking on nation's work safety laws

Friday, December 02, 2011

The Gillard government's attempt to harmonise the nation's work safety laws is, on current evidence, suffering a slow death.

Originally hailed as one of Julia Gillard's great negotiating triumphs, the legislation is falling over because of fundamental and even dangerous flaws in its core design. More...


Work safety spins out of control

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I have to admit to being wrong. In 2009, I declared that the battle over work safety laws was over and that the 'white hats' had won (The OHS battle is won, May 20, 2009).

Now I need to advise that the battle continues, but this time for different reasons. It's to do with the attempt to harmonise Australia's OHS laws. This directly affects every business, manager and worker in Australia. More...


Kirk's legal revolution

Thursday, February 04, 2010

The full ramifications of yesterday's news on the 'Kirk' High Court decision --- which, as Robert Gottliebsen reported yesterday, effectively knocks over New South Wales' OHS laws --- should not be underestimated.  More...


The OHS battle is won

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Work safety laws have been a major policy and political battle ground for a long time. That battle finally appears to be over. Late on Monday the state and federal workplace relations ministers released the details of an agreement to harmonise occupational health and safety laws across the country. More...



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