Don't degrade miners' workers comp laws

General Secretary, Andrew Vickers, has written to Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten to demand no further expansion of the Comcare workers compensation scheme, which he says was not designed to adequately cover coalminers.

Mr Vickers has referred the Minister to the ACTU's submission, where it has submitted that the Act should be amended to prevent the granting of any new Comcare licences.

He also states:

  • Tests under the Act have failed to prevent a loss of rights and/or entitlements for workers
  • The regulator lacks resources to ensure compliance
  • The scheme removes some common law access currently available for workers
  • Comcare is a consistently poor performer in the areas of rehabilitation and return to work
  • The bulk of our membership currently have specialist legislation for OHS applying in their workplaces which is superior
  • We will not tolerate any downgrading of mineworkers OHS protections

The letter can be downloaded here.