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LHA cancels provider’s licence after failure to meet annual reporting obligations

Licensed labour hire providers must report every 12 months on their labour hire activities for the previous 12 months. Failure to comply with this licence condition may result in compliance actions, including further licence conditions, suspension or cancellation. The LHA recently took the latter step after one provider failed to comply with this requirement.

Media Release: Safety a focus of farm visits

WorkSafe, Department of Justice and Community Safety and the Labour Hire Authority visited 38 horticulture businesses in the Koo Wee Rup, Lang Lang and Cardinia regions after an online farm safety webinar in October.

Did your awards change on 1 November?

Providers of labour hire workers to several industries – including airline, cleaning, beauty, hospitality, sports and tourism – will need to make sure they are paying the correct minimum wage from the first full pay period on or after 1 November.

Getting ready for the holiday rush: Pay, entitlements and safety

The Christmas and New Year holiday period is the busiest time of year for many businesses. The rush can lead to unsafe workplaces and employers and workers may have questions about employee entitlements. Check out these handy resources to help answer your questions and avoid injuries.

Continuing to improve the labour hire industry

The LHA continues to go above and beyond to safeguard labour hire workers from exploitation. The LHA’s Annual Report shows a crackdown on dodgy operators, strict reviews of licence applications and a significant take up of the labour hire licensing scheme.

Welcome to the Labour Hire Authority's October e-News

The Labour Hire Authority has worked with labour hire providers to improve their compliance and understanding of workplace laws through the licensing process, information sessions and workplace inspections.

Where we identify breaches of relevant laws, the LHA takes appropriate action including refusing applications, and suspending licences, cancelling licences, or varying licences to include conditions.

Additional rights and protections for labour hire workers under OHS Act

New changes to the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act ensures that labour hire workers now have the same rights and protections at their host employer’s workplace as employees of the host. These changes also include more consultation, coordination and cooperation requirements for both hosts and providers.

Learn more

29 October 2021

Insurance and indemnities for health and safety penalties are now gone

New laws prohibit businesses from using insurance or indemnity arranges to avoid liability to pay fines for offences under Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004 and other Acts and Regulations.

Learn more

29 October 2021

Superannuation info for providers and hosts

Labour hire providers must comply with superannuation laws to obtain and keep their labour hire licence. Hosts (including providers who subcontract) must make sure they are paying their providers enough to make a profit and meet all their legal obligations including paying award wages, superannuation, WorkCover and tax. Do you know if you must pay super?

Chance for farmers to brush up on safety this harvest season

Horticulture businesses in the Koo Wee Rup, Lang Lang and Cardinia regions are being urged to ensure they put health and safety first as harvest season moves into full swing. Subject to COVID-19 restrictions, inspectors and authorised officers will conduct compliance checks on farms in region in November to check businesses are operating safely and workers are treated fairly and provided by licensed labour hire providers.

COVID-19 Impacts & Horticulture Labour Hire Providers

To help labour hire providers in horticulture and agriculture minimise the impacts of COVID-19 and protect workers, businesses and the communities, Agriculture Victoria and Labour Hire Authority hosted two forums with Department of Health Senior Medical Advisor, Dr John Parkes.

The sessions gave providers a great opportunity to ask questions about COVIDSafe principles and their COVIDSafe plans.

32 more labour hire licence applications refused

The Labour Hire Authority has refused 32 more labour hire licence applications following enquiries in connection with compliance with modern awards and wages, superannuation, registration for WorkCover and more.

The LHA has also issued 72 additional notices of intention to refuse to applicants as a final effort for them to demonstrate their compliance with relevant laws.

Sign up to follow your providers

Did you know we can send alerts to you about labour hire providers? Sign up to Follow my providers to receive email and SMS notifications about licensed providers and applicants, including when their licences are granted, suspended or cancelled.

Start following providers

30 September 2021

Victoria’s roadmap

The Victorian Government has announced Victoria’s new roadmap to deliver the National Plan developed based on expert modelling from the Burnet Institute. It is set against COVID-19 thresholds including hospitalisation rates, and the vaccination targets already set out in the National Plan to transition Australia’s National COVID-19 Response. 

For more information see Victoria's roadmap

30 September 2021

Coronavirus (COVID-19) support and guidance

Coronavirus.vic.gov.au has a range of useful resources to help businesses find information and plan, including financial and other support for COVID-19, business grants, COVIDSafe Plans, information on testing site and more.

For free and helpful resources visit Coronavirus.vic.gov.au

30 September 2021

Call to stamp out work related violence

All Victorians are urged to change their attitudes as front-line workers face ugly aggression from members of the public. Unacceptable behaviour can have a negative impact on the physical and mental wellbeing of workers. It’s never ok.

Learn more about the campaign from WorkSafe Victoria

30 September 2021

Have you chosen the right nominated officer?

Some new labour hire licence applications have been started by people who do not control the labour hire business, like accountants or administrative assistants.

If you are making an application, remember that a nominated officer must be a person responsible for the day-to-day directing of the business.

Additional obligations for certain industries

Victoria’s COVIDSafe settings have changed from Saturday 21 August.

This has changed the additional obligations for certain industries, including poultry and meat processing, warehousing, horticulture, construction and others.

To check if your industry has been affected visit How we work: Victoria.

Have you updated your COVIDSafe plan?

All businesses must review and update their COVIDSafe Plans regularly, especially when restrictions or public health advice changes.

Organisations with multiple worksites must complete a COVIDSafe Plan for each worksite.

You can stay up to date with restrictions and public health advice at coronavirus.vic.gov.au.

Authorised worker permit update

Authorised workers in Victoria are currently required to carry employer-certified permits when working and travelling for work.

Employers must keep a record of all Authorised Worker Permits they have issued. Workplaces in Victoria must not permit workers to undertake work at the workplace unless it an authorised provider or service, or workers are authorised.

To check your eligibility and to find out how to access the authorised worker permit visit coronavirus.vic.gov.au.

Labour hire licence suspended for not declaring criminal history

The Labour Hire Authority (LHA) conducted a review of a labour hire provider and found that a relevant person to the licence did not declare their relevant criminal history.

The LHA has suspended the licence while further enquiries are underway. 

Suspended labour hire providers must not provide labour hire services. Providers found to have provided labour hire services without holding a licence that is in force face maximum penalties of up to $145,392 for an individual and $581,568 for a corporation.

Labour hire hosts must not use suspended labour hire providers, or face maximum penalties of $145,392 for individuals and $581,568 for corporations.

To maintain a labour hire licence, relevant people must pass the fit and proper person test which includes not being found guilty of certain offences and breaches.

The LHA may consider an exemption to the test in some circumstances and encourages all relevant people to honestly complete their declarations, provide all information up front and assist with enquiries.

To check the licence or application status of a labour hire provider visit labourhireauthority.vic.gov.au.

To get an email and SMS alert when your provider's licence or application changes, sign up to Follow my providers.

8 applications refused; 48 more notices of intention to refuse issued

The Labour Hire Authority has refused 8 more labour hire licence applications following investigations undertaken in connection with a range of issues including:  

  • WorkCover obligations
  • compliance with industrial instrument(s) and conditions of workers
  • compliance with other relevant laws including taxation law.

By removing providers who are not demonstrating compliance with workplace laws, the LHA is helping prevent:

  • honest businesses being unfairly undercut by businesses that do not comply with relevant laws such as WorkCover, awards and taxation laws.
  • compliant businesses facing higher WorkCover premiums because of unregistered businesses.
  • workers missing out on wages and other entitlements
  • the community missing out on revenue that could have contributed to community services.

Is your COVIDSafe plan regularly updated?

All businesses must review and update their COVIDSafe plans regularly, especially when restrictions or public health advice changes.

Organisations with multiple worksites must complete a COVIDSafe plan for each worksite.

Check-in everywhere, every time

Every Victorian business must use the Victorian Government QR Code Service to check-in their workers, customers and visitors, with some limited exemptions.

Fast and accurate contact information for anyone who has visited a COVID-19 public exposure site is vital to helping contact tracers contain an outbreak quickly.

30 July 2021

Changes to how we calculate business tiers

The Victorian Government is making the way business tiers are calculated fairer.

From 1 July 2021, business tiers will be based on the labour hire provider’s turnover for the last 4 quarters at the time of licence fee payments. This does not apply to outstanding fees first due before 1 July 2021

Updated COVIDSafe settings - June 2021

The Victorian Government has announced changes to COVIDSafe settings. On the advice of the Chief Health Officer, restrictions in regional Victoria and metropolitan Melbourne will ease from 11.59pm Thursday 24 June

For more information, businesses can go to Coronavirus.vic.gov.au or call the Business Victoria hotline on 13 22 15. 

Learn more

30 June 2021

Chance for grape growers to prune safety hazards

Sunraysia grape growers are being urged to ensure they have safety covered this pruning season.

WorkSafe, Department of Health and the Labour Hire Authority are hosting an online information session on 10 June to help businesses ensure they are meeting their health and safety obligations, staying COVID-safe, supporting vulnerable workers and ensuring labour hire workers are treated fairly and provided through licensed labour hire providers.

Agriculture Victoria, Australian Table Grape Association and Victorian Farmers Federation representatives will also be on hand to provide support and answer any questions growers may have.

Subject to COVID-19 restrictions, a three-day inspection program will follow in the Robinvale area from 22-24 June to check businesses are operating safely.

Follow my providers tool now available

Follow my providers helps you follow the licence or application status of a labour hire provider and lets you know when:

  • applications are refused or withdrawn
  • licences are granted, suspended or cancelled
  • suspended licences are re-issued.

How will I find out about licence or application changes?

We will send you an email with the licence or application status change. You will also receive an SMS notification to check your email at 9:30am (AEST) the following day.

Start following providers

Licence condition placed on labour hire provider

Following a conviction against Robert Albano, the Labour Hire Authority has placed a licence condition on BridgingWorx Limited’s labour hire licence (VICLHL04753).

Robert Albano was found guilty by the County Court of Victoria of an indictable offence on 6 May 2021.

On the 7 May 2021 the Labour Hire Authority placed a condition on the licence of BridgingWorx that Robert Rocco Albano is to be excluded from all labour hire services provided under the licence.

The Authority obtained documents indicating Robert Albano was at times before the conviction the Chairperson and CEO of BridgingWorx.

BridgingWorx has cooperated with the Authority and has advised that they have ceased involvement with Robert Albano and have ordered a review of the business’s policies and procedures, including engaging a consultancy firm to assist in governance, transparency and social responsibility.

BridgingWorx provides workers to the healthcare and social assistance sectors across Australia.

The Authority will continue monitoring the compliance of the labour hire provider.

Labour hire providers must comply with workplace laws and pass a fit and proper person test to keep their labour hire licences.

The Labour Hire Authority is improving the transparency and integrity of the labour hire industry. Improving the transparency and integrity of the labour hire industry will protect labour hire workers from exploitation and will ensure transparent and compliant labour hire providers do not face unfair competition from dishonest operators.

If you have any concerns about relevant people related to a labour hire licence, such as company directors or officers, not being fit and proper please Report a Problem to the Labour Hire Authority.

31 May 2021

Robinvale information session

The coronavirus (COVID-19) has changed the way farms operate; we know this hasn’t been easy. It’s more important than ever to have safety covered on farms.

We’re here to help keep businesses operating safely, smoothly and fairly during pruning season – come and chat to us in Robinvale on Thursday 10 June.

Join WorkSafe Victoria, the Department of Health, the Labour Hire Authority, Agriculture Victoria, the Victorian Farmers Federation and the Australian Table Grape Association to talk about farm safety.

Book now

31 May 2021

Annual reporting

To help licensed providers collect the information and supporting documents needed to complete their annual reporting, we have published an annual reporting guide and checklist.

For most providers annual reporting is short and simple. In developing the annual reporting process, we considered feedback from the labour hire licence application process and made annual reporting more straightforward and easier to use.

Guide and checklist

31 May 2021

Circuit Breaker Business Support Package

The Victorian Government has launched the $250 million Circuit Breaker Business Support Package to assist small to medium businesses and sole traders, under the circuit breaker restrictions announced on 27 May 2021.

More information about the Circuit Breaker Business Support Package is available at Business.vic.gov.au

31 May 2021

Over 5,000 labour hire licence applications assessed

The Labour Hire Authority has assessed over 5000 labour hire licence applications. This includes licences that have been suspended, cancelled and granted with conditions, as well as applications that have been refused.

This helps protect the 599,000 workers supplied by labour hire providers because providers must continue to comply with workplace laws and pass a 'fit and proper person' test to obtain and maintain their licence. This also creates more fairness for ethical labour hire providers who have sought a more transparent industry with greater integrity.

Labour hire licence refused

The Labour Hire Authority has refused to grant a licence to MTL 354 PTY LTD.

In making licensing decisions, the Authority considers applications on completeness, accuracy and integrity. Where further information is required we undertake enquiries and work with other regulators and law enforcement agencies to gather evidence required for our licensing decisions.

The Authority had serious concerns and suspected significant non-compliance with a range of relevant laws that providers must comply with to obtain and keep their labour hire licence.

The Authority concluded its investigation and determined to refuse the licence application.

It is unlawful for the business to provide labour hire services or it faces maximum penalties of $528,704. Hosts must not use the business for labour hire services or they face maximum penalties of $528,704.

Work-related fatigue: A guide for employers

Employers are responsible for preventing and managing fatigue in the workplace. There are three broad types of fatigue: physical, mental and emotional.

All of these can obviously affect both workplace and public safety and can also have long-term health effects. While preventing fatigue improves workplace health and safety, reduces workplace injuries and staff absences and leads to greater productivity. 

To learn how to prevent fatigue, check out the Work-related fatigue guide for employers from WorkSafe.

30 April 2021

Horticulture visits put safety in the spotlight

WorkSafe, Department of Health and Labour Hire Authority inspectors have visited almost 40 orchards across the Shepparton region as part of a co-ordinated approach to workplace safety.

Labour Hire Licensing Commissioner Steve Dargavel said the Authority’s focus during its 19 visits was on education and ensuring compliance, checking that providers had COVIDSafe plans, as well as looking at their licence status and conditions for labour hire workers.

“These site inspections were important because they helped identify providers that needed COVIDSafe plans. By working with growers and providers to make sure they have compliant COVIDSafe plans we’re protecting regional communities and the harvest,” he said.

“Our compliance and enforcement officers were well received by growers who provided information about their labour hire providers. We have also received positive feedback about the information session hosted in Shepparton leading up to the inspections.”