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Recent changes to labour laws in Queensland have been introduced to regulate the hiring of workers. The Labour Hire Licensing Act 2017, introduced on the 16 April 2018, was devised to protect labour hire workers from exploitation and to help promote the integrity of the labour industry. These changes in the law were a direct response to the Report of the Queensland Finance and Administration Parliamentary Committee Inquiry, which detailed evidence of exploitation and mistreatment in the labour industry.

What you need to know

The Labour Hire Licensing Act 2017 has now made it necessary for labour hire providers to apply for a license. This license is designed to ensure that continued awareness, monitoring and enforcement of labour-related misconduct in the labour industry remains consistent and ongoing.

This license must be applied for 60 days after the initial introduction of the law on 16 April – during this time, once the license is applied for, relevant obligations and penalties related to the Act will not apply until a decision regarding the licence has been made.

Key features of the Act

Along with the need for labour hire providers to obtain a license, the Labour Hire Licensing Act introduces several key means to curb exploitation in the labour market. They are as following:

  • Those normally engaging labour hire providers must only engage licensed labour providers.
  • Labour hire licensees are required to satisfy a test to determine whether they are “fit and proper”. This is to guarantee that they are capable of providing labour hire services in compliance with relevant laws.
  • Required financial viability of the labour hire business.
  • Licensees must provide six monthly reports on labour hire and associated activities. This includes employee accommodation and compliance with relevant laws.

Severe penalties have been introduced to penalise labour hire providers accordingly for breaching any of these obligations. Complying with these obligations is expected to improve relationships within the labour industry, particularly in relation to employer-employee relationships, and to promote improved workplace health and safety measures.

Learn more about new labour hire laws

The Queensland government have established a website to inform workers, providers or labour hire and users of labour hire to answer any questions those in the industry might have. For those wanting to enquire about more general labour information, or to learn more about the labour industry in Queensland, make sure to get in touch with the team at Skills Certified today.

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