The House of Representatives extended its sitting calendar to consider amendments to the Secure Jobs, Better Pay Bill proposed by the Senate.
These amendments were agreed to on a vote of 78-42 and the Bill has now passed both houses.
The exact timing of Royal Assent is unclear – in the usual course, assent would occur sometime in the week commencing 12 December 2022, but the Government may expedite this or, given when some amendments are to commence, may seek to delay it until the very end of the year.
The Bill makes several significant changes to the Fair Work Act, including:
– two streams of multi-employer bargaining;
– the ability for the FWC to arbitrate disputes about flexible working arrangements and parental leave;
– the outlawing of pay secrecy clauses;
– the outlawing of fixed-term contracts for periods of longer than two years (except in exceptional circumstances);
– modifications to the Better Off Overall Test that may (or may not) make it easier for enterprise agreements to be approved