November 2013 Industry Update

How FWBC can help small businesses

A recent Productivity Commission report has shown that small businesses benefit most when communication is effective and information is accessible.

FWBC is committed to supporting small businesses and has a range of resources to help them comply with the laws we regulate.

If you have questions about your workplace rights and responsibilities, you can call FWBC on 1800 003 338 to get advice. For instance, some of the areas we can provide assistance on are:

  • what to do if employees walk off site because of an industrial dispute;
  • the rules about union representatives having right of entry to your site;
  • you and your employees’ right to join, or not join, a union;
  • the rules governing the negotiation of Enterprise Agreements;
  • your rights and responsibilities in relation to safety complaints; and
  • independent contractor rights and responsibilities.

FWBC also has teams of inspectors and lawyers, who can investigate and prosecute breaches to the fullest extent of the law. These matters include:

  • unlawful industrial action;
  • coercion;
  • right of entry;
  • freedom of association; and
  • discrimination.

You can access fact sheets about these matters on our website: www.fwbc.gov.au.

You can also call the FWBC hotline on 1800 003 338 anonymously to report incidents that have happened on site, or just to seek some advice and assistance. Anything you report can be treated in confidence.

At FWBC we appreciate that running a small business is a balancing act. We know that small businesses can find it challenging to juggle all of their commitments.

The Productivity Commission report estimates that the average small business spends five hours per week on compliance with regulation requirements.

With small businesses comprising 98 per cent of businesses in the Australian construction industry, FWBC is committed to providing information that will help them know their rights and comply with the law.

We value your feedback on our Industry Update. Provide feedback or tell us what you would like in your update at: publicaffairs [at] fwbc.gov.au or contact Damien O’Meara on 03 8509 3041.

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