The Urgent Problem of the Degradation of Collective Bargaining in Australia

Enterprise bargaining might be the best method for all main parties in Australia. The main parties’ intentions are relatively straightforward. The aim of the unions was to avoid the constraints on their ability to make demands for increased wages and to prosecute them. They opposed to the limitations placed on them by the principles of wage control and claimed that the compromises that their members made under the principles of restructuring and structural efficiency were far beyond. 

The intention of the employers was to gain power in the workforce that the administrative system and the privileges it gave to trade unions refused them. Even though the arbitrators were appointed there was a temporary partnership of ease, the long-term interests of both parties were distinct and, to a large extent, contradictory. Major employer leaders have become clear that they are not really supporting collective bargaining. Moreover, the influence of unions is resented when they have the ability to implement demands. However, not only union members bear the costs of collectively agreed wages and conditions at jobs, it also shares the benefits of collective bargaining, through higher revenue, better government revenue growth, increased social expenditure and an equal society, through all employees and the society as a whole. 

A way to reverse the degradation of collective bargaining in the private sector is through industry-wide negotiations, common to most of advanced economies-and in still more economies, where enterprise bargaining is also ineffective to extend collective bargaining rights to everyone. In addition, collective bargaining agreements are a requirement to a sustainable development. There is no real mass development for communities without solid collective bargaining structure to make sure economic growth gains are widely shared. Sector-wide agreements can enable employees without negotiating power to pool their leverage on the present labour market and work together on obtaining a reasonable share of the profits they produce. A collective bargaining process with powerful industry development structures often aims to achieve wage increase to small-scale employers who are generally unable to join collective bargaining. Sector-wide agreements may boost wages and working conditions and eliminate workers' salaries from marketability's 'firing line'. Nonetheless, this would support Australian workers' long term-proofing, in view of strong developments in globalisation and media platforms that will push and split up the labour market and raise pressure on their incomes. 

Furthermore, certain policy reform incentives include the elimination of workers' right to use threatened enterprise agreements as shield through replacement agreements, the creation of a better and more efficient mediation system in order to insure the enterprise agreement requirements are implemented correctly and reasonably, and the easing of union activity limitations which include access to industrial practices and organisations. Unions serve an important part in bringing together individual employer' bargaining power to jointly discuss working conditions of employment including the increasing transition to smaller jobs as well as the growth of more diverse areas of employment. Due to several years of repressive laws limiting worker freedoms and skills, strong opposition from employers and negative developments in the rest of the economy. 

In conclusion, immediate action needs to be taken to tackle the deterioration of collective agreements in Australia to resolve this decrease so that consistent improvement in income and productiveness results in increasing standards of living for the economy.

07 July 2022
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