The Labor Government has been forced into an embarrassing backflip over its latest WorkCover bill.
Minister for Workers’ Rehabilitation Jack Snelling, who introduced the Workers Rehabilitation and Compensation (Employer Payments) Amendment Bill 2011 on 28 September 2011, has advised Self Insurers of South Australia key provisions of the bill will now be removed and the bill re-written.
The backflip follows strong criticism by a number of organisations and individual businesses such as Southern Cross Care, Ingham Enterprises, Yalumba, Intercast & Forge, SISA and the Civil Contractors Federation (SA).
“There has been significant criticism of the lack of consultation by WorkCover and the Labor Government,” Shadow Industrial Relations Minister Rob Lucas said.
“In particular, the draft bill that was provided for consultation was significantly different to the actual bill introduced by Mr Snelling to Parliament. In particular the tabled bill introduced significant restrictions on the operations of self insurers in South Australia.
“It would appear that Mr Snelling has either not understood what was actually included in his bill or he has been deliberately deceptive in terms of trying to sneak this bill through the Parliament.
“In either case, Mr Snelling is left red faced and deserving of significant criticism.
“Given Mr Snelling wants this bill passed by Parliament in the next three sitting weeks he should immediately release a copy of the amended bill for consideration by stakeholders and non-government MPs.”