No real protection for labour rights or migrant workers
Despite promises that the TPP would contain enforceable labour rights, governments only commit to implementing their own labour laws, not recognised international standards, and the products of forced and child labour are not banned.
Complaints can only be made if there is a “sustained or recurring” violation of labour rights in a manner affecting trade or investment, meaning public sector workers and others in non-traded sectors are not covered.
The enforcement process requires lengthy consultation and has not been effective in other agreements with similar clauses.
The TPP also removes labour market testing for temporary migrant workers from six TPP countries, meaning there’s no requirement to test if Australian workers are available.
- Report of the Senate Reference Committee on Education and Employment 2015 A National Disgrace
- “One in five migrant workers on 457 visas could be underpaid or incorrectly employed,” Sydney Morning Herald May 29,
- Trans-Pacific Partnership Labour Chapter scorecard: fundamental issues remain unaddressed, International Trade Union Confederation, November 2015
- New visas threaten Australian jobs, Sydney Morning Herald, June 6 2016
- Backpacker work visa scheme risks becoming 'black market', Sydney Morning Herald, October 15 2016
Updated: August 2017