The ACTU says the Howard government is issuing around 400,000 visas annually for people from overseas to take a job in Australia for up to four years.
The number of temporary business visas issued is now double what it was in 1996 and there has been a 24% increase in the number of long stay (up to 4 years) business visas in the last year alone.
The ACTU is concerned by reports that employers are rorting the visas to avoid giving jobs to local workers and increasing the competition to lower pay and conditions.
These overseas worker abuses highlight the ugly side of the Howard government’s deregulated job market, says ACTU President Sharan Burrow.
‘The wages and conditions of Australian workers are under enough pressure from the government’s new IR laws. Now we have what looks like an open-slather approach by the government to allow any employer who wants to bring in temporary workers from overseas to take Australian jobs,’ she said.
Locals lose out, overseas workers exploited in visa rorts
Recent reports of locals left on the job scrap heap and overseas workers exploited and underpaid include:
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