FWO takes conciliatory line on RSRO enforcement

Recognition stated that order relates to sector never regulated in this way before

FWO takes conciliatory line on RSRO enforcement
The FWO says it will continue to consult broadly.


Those who do their best to comply with Contractor Driver Minimum Payments Road Safety Remuneration Order 2016 (RSRO) are likely to be treated with understanding, the Fair Work Ombudsman’s (FWO’s) office indicates.

Despite strong criticism from the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT), amongst others, of its approach and performance so far, the FWO emphasises its consultative and educative role as well as that covering compliance.

It also appears to have made the first official acknowledgement from either body that the RSRO marks a regulatory entry into a sector of a kind that it had not been subject to previously – a point recognised by Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) Kate Carnell.

"The Fair Work Ombudsman’s role includes providing education, advice and assistance to those affected by the 2016 Order and to monitor compliance with the 2016 Order," it says, now that the order is in force.  

"The 2016 Order prescribes rates of pay for contractor drivers for the first time.  

"We recognise that this cohort has previously not been subject to regulation of this nature. 

"The Fair Work Ombudsman will continue to consult broadly with stakeholders about the interpretation and application of the 2016 Order. 

"With respect to compliance with the 2016 Order, our approach will be fair and flexible and achieved through a mix of guidance, advice, education and common sense.

"We will not take a punitive approach to those who act in good faith with the 2016 Order. 

"We have a range of online resources available to assist people understand and comply with the 2016 Order." 

Along with RSRT criticism, the FWO was the subject of industry complaints both to representative bodies and the RSRT’s RSRO delay hearings over Easter about shortfalls in its preparation and handling of the order.

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