MADELEINE KING MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR CONSUMER AFFAIRS
SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR SMALL BUSINESS
SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR RESOURCES
MEMBER FOR BRAND
ANDREW LEIGH MP
SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER
SHADOW MINISTER FOR COMPETITION AND PRODUCTIVITY
SHADOW MINISTER FOR TRADE IN SERVICES
SHADOW MINISTER FOR CHARITIES AND NOT-FOR-PROFITS
MEMBER FOR FENNER
MAKING UNFAIR CONTRACT TERMS ILLEGAL: THIRD PARTY SUPPORT
‘Some big businesses have been snubbing their noses at the current legislation as it lacks any capacity to punish those who abuse their power. The ACCC, who governs this activity, are basically powerless to make certain big businesses stop adding these unfair terms. If the changes proposed by Mr Leigh are made then we will see an immediate change of attitude and behaviour from those recalcitrant businesses or they will be paying big hefty fines.’
- Peter Strong, Council of Small Businesses of Australia chief executive.
The changes to unfair contract terms announced by Labor is in line with our submission to the review currently being undertaken by Treasury. Making unfair contract terms illegal would be a major improvement in protecting small businesses… Any change to legislation or regulation that levels the playing field between small business, the engine room of our economy, and the larger players is worth pursuing.’
- Kate Carnell, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman.
“Bill Shorten’s Labor has announced that it will make unfair contract terms illegal and impose major fines for breaches. This is a position that we totally endorse. Unfair contract laws protecting small business people were created in November 2015. Big businesses had 12 months to fix their contracts before the laws took effect. But big businesses did nothing. The ACCC has worked hard to enforce the laws but the task is huge when large businesses won’t voluntarily comply.”
- Self Employed Australia.
“The law simply isn’t strong enough. Unfair contract terms should be illegal.”
- Rod Sims, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission chair, speaking on unfair contract terms in August.
Not everyone has welcomed Labor’s announcement. Proving that irony is not dead, Senator Michaelia Cash, the minister who once hid from the media behind a whiteboard, has described Labor’s policy as:
"another Labor stunt"
Fact sheet available here.
Authorised by Noah Carrol, ALP, Canberra.