Government accepts Bacik Bill on workers’ rights
Senator Ivana Bacik’s Competition (Amendment) Bill passed Second Stage in the Seanad today after Minister Richard Bruton, on behalf of the Government, did not oppose it.
Senator Bacik proposed the Competition (Amendment) Bill 2016 on behalf of the Labour Party Senators, as a Private Members’ Bill. Senator Aideen Hayden of Labour seconded the Bill.
Welcoming the passage of the Bill through second stage, Senator Bacik said: “The Bill represents an important protection of the rights of self-employed and freelance workers. I am delighted that it has now passed second stage and will work to see that it is enacted as law, if not within the lifetime of this Government, then early in the term of the next. This Bill will allow self-employed workers, such as actors or journalists, who personally provide work or perform services, to collectively bargain with their employers. However, it would ensure consumers remain protected from illegal price-fixing. I was glad to welcome representatives from unions, such as the NUJ, Equity and SIPTU, to attend the debate on the Bill this evening in the Seanad. It is great to see it pass through second stage.”
This Bill stems from a longstanding Labour party commitment to ensure protection of the right to collectively bargain for freelance workers, including journalists, actors and others who perform their work on a self-employed or contract for services basis.