New workplace laws introduced into the Australian Parliament last week mark a historic turning point to restoring workers' rights after a decade of attacks by the former Coalition Government, says the Australian Council of Trade Unions.
ACTU president Sharan Burrow said the industrial relations legislation is the result of a concerted campaign by unions to scrap WorkChoices, which undermined the wages and conditions of Australian workers.
"Workers and activists campaigned like never before to rid us of WorkChoices, and a year ago millions of Australians said the Liberals and Nationals had gone too far with their assault on our rights at work."
"We have more than 10 years of harm to undo, but we have turned the tide. This legislation is a major achievement but does not mean the campaign for better rights is over. We will never stop pushing for improvements in the workplace and better mechanisms to safeguard the jobs and living standards of working Australians."
The controversial WorkChoices legislation was designed to undermine collective bargaining and removed protections against unfair dismissal. It is widely seen as a major reason for the downfall of John Howard's government.