15 November 2019
NSW Labor has succeeded in having new laws to protect delivery drivers pass through the Legislative Council.
Currently, drivers who carry bread, milk or cream for sale are exempt from protections under the NSW Industrial Relations Act, meaning those drivers can’t appeal against bad pay or unsafe working conditions to the independent umpire, the Industrial Relations Commission.
Labor Leader in the Legislative Council and Shadow Minister for Industrial Relations, Adam Searle MLC, said this was a big step forward for the industry.
“The Liberals and Nationals have been happy to exclude drivers who transport bread, milk or cream from the protection of the State’s industrial relations system.
“NSW has the opportunity now to take a big step forward. The only people left standing in the way are the NSW Liberals and Nationals.”
The Bill will now have to pass the Legislative Assembly, where Gladys Berejiklian herself will either have to vote for or against supporting NSW truck drivers.
“This is a test of Liberal Premier Gladys Berejiklian’s leadership. Will she stand up for truck drivers, or will she stand in the way of them getting a fair go?” — Adam Searle MLC
Labor Shadow Minister for Western Sydney, Greg Warren, who has previously pushed for this reform in the NSW Parliament in 2018 said: “As a former truckie myself, I know that truck driving can be an incredibly dangerous line of work.”
“The inherent danger and risk involved in truck driving is precisely why it is so important that all truck drivers have strong, rigorous industrial rights and protections.”