Exposure Draft Migration Amendment (Protecting Migrant Workers) Bill 2021
The submission to the Department of Home Affairs in response to the Exposure Draft of the Migration Amendment (Protecting Migrant Workers) Bill 2021 (Bill) was prepared by the Law Council of Australia.
The Law Council welcomes and supports legislative reform to strengthen existing protocols to address worker exploitation involving migrant workers in Australia.
Migrant workers are vulnerable to exploitative workplace practices, and often possess little to no means of redress due to legal, social and economic impediments, as identified in the Report of the Migrant Workers’ Taskforce (March 2019) (Taskforce Report).
The Law Council recognises that threats of visa cancellation (and possible detention and removal as a result) because a worker has breached visa conditions or received threats to withhold evidence of work and other adverse consequences as identified by the Context Paper accompanying the Draft Bill (Context Paper), are particularly challenging issues which should be addressed through greater legislative protections.
The Law Council considers the proposals in the Bill are good faith attempts to give effect to the recommendations in the Taskforce Report, although considers some improvements to the Bill and certain practical measures are required.
You can read the full submission below.