Release type: Media Release


Unions should back Toyota jobs


Senator the Hon Eric Abetz
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for Employment
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service
Senator for Tasmania

The Federal Court’s decision to prevent Toyota employees from voting today on a number of proposals to improve productivity and remove outdated work practices is a disappointing outcome.

The Federal Court has ruled that a ‘no extra claims’ provision in the agreement would need to be removed before Toyota could propose further variations designed to remove restrictive work practices.

"The Coalition Government wants the Australian automotive industry to survive and flourish," Senator Abetz said.

"Toyota is seeking variations to its agreement that would unlock its ability to improve competitiveness and secure future work in Australia.

"Becoming more productive is clearly beneficial for employees not only of Toyota but of the many companies that supply Toyota.

"The comments from Toyota today should be sending off alarm bells to the union bosses who have ‘rejected’ any change to the same restrictive work practices that they forced on Ford and Holden.

"Toyota and its workers should not be hamstrung by unions that can’t see beyond protecting outdated practices and their own interests.

"I have sought urgent advice from my department on the Federal Court’s decision, but am concerned by reports that the unions are opposing outright the proposed changes to the enterprise agreement.

"It is clearly in the best interests of all parties, particularly Toyota employees, to work together and consider changes to help secure the company’s future in Australia and protect jobs,” Senator Abetz said.