17 July, 2014 – SBS, AAP

Critics say the plan to allow foreign workers to access temporary visas to work on oil rigs would have allowed migrant workers to be exploited at the expense of Australian jobs.

The Coalition planned to remove a requirement put in place by the Gillard government which would force oil and gas rig workers from abroad to have a 457 skilled migration visa.

Labor, the Greens and the Palmer United Party last night blocked the move in the Senate.

Greens Senator Adam Bandt this morning said the move would protect local jobs and wages.

“Last night, the Senate stood up to the government and disallowed a regulation that would have seen workers in Australian waters, working on Australian projects, extracting Australian oil and gas, not having to be paid Australian minimum wages and conditions,” he said.

Earlier, Assistant Minister for Immigration Michaelia Cash slammed the decision, saying it put the jobs of thousands of foreign workers in jeopardy.



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