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Labour Minister refuses to front on ERB

"The Labour Minister is revealing contempt of the democratic process with her refusal to front to the select committee on the Employment Relations Bill," Opposition Industrial Relations spokesperson Max Bradford said today.

"The Minister of Labour has today told Parliament she is not willing to come to the select committee to explain the policy intentions behind the Employment Relations Bill.

"What's she afraid of?

"She has already admitted that the Bill is not perfect. The reality is it's unworkable.

"All over the country employers, lawyers and experts are astounded at how academic and theoretic the law change is and that it won't work in practice.

"The Minister must front - even if she finds it difficult to face the criticism.

"It is highly unusual for a Minister to be unwilling to clarify and inform the select committee about their legislation.

"She's prepared to talk to over 50 groups of unions and employers, but not to the select committee.

"The Government does not want the select committee scrutiny of the Employment Relations Bill to be carried out in a fair, informed and democratic manner.

"A pattern of abuse of the select committee process is developing.

"We've already had the select committee chair briefing unions on the tactics to ensure the Bill gets passed - including telling them he will arrange for their submissions to be heard during the daytime when the media is there.

"And the select committee chair won't let Treasury appear either to explain the economic impact of the Bill."

Ends

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