Regulating supply chains to provide a safe rate for road transport workers

Publisher:
LexisNexis Butterworths
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
Australian Journal of Labour Law, 2012, 25 pp. 237 - 257
Issue Date:
2012-01
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Business outsourcing and restructuring has contributed to the growth of precarious work arrangements in Australia and around the developed world. Precarious work results in adverse health and safety outcomes for workers and has challenged conventional regulatory regimes based on the standard employment relationship. This article examines a current attempt to regulate for a particular sub-set of precarious workers those working at the base of vertical supply chains in the Australian road transport industry. It charts the influence of commercially dominant clients with effective control over the pay and conditions of workers engaged through their transport supply chain.The article also summarises evidence linking pay rates of truck drivers to safety outcomes. It is argued that regulatory innovation is required to address this link between pay and safety as well as the role of the client. The article explores the potential for the Road Safety Remuneration Act 2012 (Cth) to improve conditions for transport supply chain labour through such regulatory innovation. Business outsourcing and restructuring has contributed to the growth of precarious work arrangements in Australia and around the developed world. Precarious work results in adverse health and safety outcomes for workers and has challenged conventional regulatory regimes based on the standard employment relationship. This article examines a current attempt to regulate for a particular sub-set of precarious workers those working at the base of vertical supply chains in the Australian road transport industry. It charts the influence of commercially dominant clients with effective control over the pay and conditions of workers engaged through their transport supply chain.The article also summarises evidence linking pay rates of truck drivers to safety outcomes.
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