Minister Mitchell O’Connor visits Flow Technology on Trade and Investment Mission in Ireland

With executives from Flow Technology and Enterprise Ireland

Thursday 18 May

As part of the two-day Enterprise Ireland / IDA Trade & Investment Mission in Ireland event, the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD visited Flow Technology at their facility in Charleville, Co. Cork on 17 May.

The company, set up 40 years ago by the current owner’s father, Denis Murphy, is now one of Ireland’s leading process systems and equipment manufacturers, servicing the biotechnology, beverage and food industries in Ireland and Europe.

Key to its expansion over the years was a strategic decision to diversify into servicing Ireland’s multinational owned bio-pharmaceutical base, a move now supported by the joint Enterprise Ireland / IDA Global Sourcing initiative. The result is that the company has doubled its turnover in the last two years and increased its employment to 50 people. With further growth anticipated in the FDI & Indigenous sectors, the company plans further expansion & investment in its facilities in Charleville and expects additional growth in employment in the 2018-2020 period.

During her visit to Flow Technology, Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD said: “Flow Technology is a prime example of the world class supplier base that Ireland now offers the ever-increasing multinational Life Sciences sector. Flow Technology are an ambitious and growing company which provide employment and make a difference to the lives of people right here in Charleville. I want to congratulate Tim and his highly skilled workforce on their success and wish them well in the future”.

Flow Technology provides GMP solutions constructed on client sites or as pre-fabricated skid modules from its Charleville facilities including: –
• Clean In Place
• Chromatography
• Depth / Ultra / Nano Filtration
• High Temperature Short Time heat treatment
• Disposable systems
• Temperature Control Modules
• Transfer Panels
• Bio-waste Deactivation
• Buffer Dilution
• Purified Water Distribution

CEO Tim Murphy, who joined the company in 1993 having worked overseas for several years, said “The company’s high level of repeat business is due to our employee’s track record for technical excellence and quality of service, with these same values being instilled into newly recruited graduate engineers & apprentices, we aim for continued growth & success. As a regional indigenous Irish owned company, we thank Enterprise Ireland for their support to date. We look forward to continued support from Enterprise Ireland as the business grows, assisting with introduction of the Irish supplier base to new FDI arrivals & also from a government which prioritises infrastructural development to support regional business”.

The joint Enterprise Ireland / IDA Global Sourcing Initiative was established as part of the Irish Government’s Action Plan for Jobs strategy with the aim of increasing the level of engagement between IDA backed multinational companies based in Ireland and Irish suppliers.
The goal is that by working together on this agenda that the agencies, with the support of key industry players, can assist multinational procurement teams meet their sourcing needs while deepening the penetration by Irish companies of the multinational sector.

Mary Mitchell O’Connor Statement on Fine Gael Leadership

Enda Kenny has been a phenomenal Fine Gael leader, Taoiseach, politician and parliamentarian.

He was one of the few, indeed maybe the only, politician who had the drive, the skillset and the courage to step up and do the work needed to secure our state. When needed most, he showed stamina, strength and conviction.

The right person, for the right job, at the right time. We all owe him a debt of gratitude.

And like the great men he succeeded, men like FitzGerald, Bruton and most aptly Cosgrave, he will be remembered and respected by history.

His legacy is secure. A legacy of a man who never had, nor sought, universal popular approval but who showed political integrity and unwavering fortitude.

When Enda Kenny took office, Ireland’s unemployment rate was at 15%. We were locked out of international markets with bond yields at 14%.

Our republic was crumbling, our young people were emigrating and our sovereignty was at risk.

Now our unemployment rate is at 6.2% and we are beginning to look up once more.

He has been a remarkable public servant and leaves behind an enviable record.

Now, as both Fine Gael and Ireland move into a new stage, we require new leadership.

We need a bold new vision for Ireland. We have moved out of a crisis but we need to know where we are moving to. Significant challenges remain and we need leadership that provides us with a guiding principle to meet those challenges.

We need a country that rewards work and effort. That respects small business, that is attractive to foreign investment, both economically and culturally, and that protects and defends the dignity of its citizens.

And in globally uncertain times we need leadership that will place Ireland on the right side of history.
Another leader to continue to defend equality, openness and progress on the world stage.

I believe that Fine Gael contains the talent, throughout, to provide that leadership.

The upcoming Fine Gael leadership contest needs to be about who best embodies the attributes and values that Fine Gael stands for. Who can continue our economic progress, in the right way. And who can continue our social progression.

It’s about which candidate can provide us with a 21st century Just Society.

The candidate whose vision for the country best matches my own, the candidate who can not only manage but can lead, will get my support in the upcoming election.

From 2011 to today, Enda Kenny led governments that brought us stability and growth. They repaired and remade the foundations of our state.

Now it’s time for the next generation of leadership to build on his efforts and create a lasting, sustainable, just society.

Aspire Technology announces 150 new jobs in Dublin

Aspire Technology, an independent, Irish-owned and managed ICT company today (Friday, 12 May 2017) announced 150 new jobs at their Irish headquarters in Sandyford, County Dublin. Founded in 2010, Aspire Technology delivers end-to-end mobile network lifecycle professional services and product solutions to the world’s leading telecommunications, equipment and software providers.

The new positions, which are supported by the Department of Jobs through Enterprise Ireland, cover a broad spectrum of ICT and mobile telecommunications technologies and competencies. The roles include software developers, network engineers, design specialists and project managers at both experienced and graduate levels. Recruitment of the new positions is starting immediately including an extensive graduate recruitment programme.

As part of the expansion, Aspire Technology will be adding to their existing headquarters in Sandyford where they will build a state-of-the-art Network Support Centre. The new centre will serve over 16 million mobile customers across 32 markets during 2017. Plans are already in place to grow this facility to manage over 50 million mobile customers.

Announcing the new jobs, Bill Walsh, CEO and Founder of Aspire Technology said: “Aspire Technology’s growth is based on our world-class people whose deep expertise, allied with the innovative and entrepreneurial culture within the company, has resulted in a significant increase in demand for our solutions. We are thrilled that we are doubling our team in 2017. We have amazing opportunities for ambitious candidates who love working with people and technology. Our culture is built on developing and supporting our teams to deliver exceptional expertise to our international blue-chip customers. This culture is reflected in our high levels of employee satisfaction and we are proud to be known in the industry as having an exceptionally high employee retention ratio.”

Welcoming the announcement, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, said: “Today’s announcement that Aspire Technology, an indigenous company, is creating 150 new high-tech, professional jobs in Dublin is exciting and very welcome. It is testament to the vision and hard work of everyone in Aspire Technology that the company has grown from a small start-up into a highly innovative and successful company. The Government through Enterprise Ireland looks forward to continued engagement with Aspire Technology as they scale their business in international markets. I wish Bill and all the team at Aspire continued success for the future.”

Kevin Sherry, Executive Director, Enterprise Ireland concluded: “Enterprise Ireland’s mission is to partner with innovative Irish businesses with the drive and ambition to scale internationally. Aspire Technology is a great example of an indigenous Irish ICT company with global ambition, competing and winning against strong competition in international markets. This expansion is testament to the ambition and capabilities of the company. Enterprise Ireland has been working with Aspire Technology since its establishment in 2010, and we are proud to be backing this exciting new phase in its development with support for 150 new highly-skilled jobs at their headquarters in Dublin.”

Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor attends Foreign Affairs Council – Trade, Brussels

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor T.D. will today (Thursday 11th May) attend, the Foreign Affairs Council – Trade in Brussels. The Minister will discuss at Council preparations for the 11th World Trade Organisation Ministerial Conference, implementation of Free Trade Agreements, an update on preparations for the opening of new trade negotiations with Australia and New Zealand and an update on ongoing trade negotiations with Japan, Mexico and Mercosur.

Speaking at the Council today the Minister said that “promoting trade and diversifying into new markets is critical for Ireland .Today we will be working on progressing the EUs ambitious trade negotiations. These new trade agreements will create real opportunities for Irish business and will support our firms in realising their trade diversification strategies which are all the more important in light of brexit.”

The Minister will also hold a bilateral meeting with Ms. Ann Linde, Swedish Minister for EU Affairs and Trade as part of her ongoing programme of engagements with EU counterparts on the trade, enterprise and Brexit agenda.

Minister Mitchell O’Connor will also continue her ongoing dialogue with Lord Price, UK Minister of State for Trade Policy, on the importance of the Ireland / UK trade and economic relationship. The Minister will once again point out the significance of the impact of the UK exit from the EU on Ireland and reiterate the unique nature of the Irish /UK relationship.

Minister Mitchell O’Connor announces publication of submissions to public consultation on resale of tickets for entertainment and sporting events

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor, today announced the publication of the responses received by her Department to the recent public consultation on the resale of tickets for entertainment and sporting events. The 24 responses can be accessed on the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation website at

Announcing the publication, the Minister said –
I would like to thank the individuals, sporting organisations, promoters, primary and secondary ticketing service providers and others who took the time and trouble to respond to the consultation. Their responses contain a considerable amount of interesting and informative material about the organisation of major entertainment and sporting events and the operation of the primary and secondary markets for such events. They cover a range of different views on the matters at issue and put forward a range of different, and in some cases conflicting solutions, as to what might be done to help ensure that ticket markets would work better for music and sports fans in the future.

I would encourage everyone with an interest in the issue to read and reflect on the responses to the consultation. Before decisions are taken on a complex issue with a number of different dimensions, it is important that we have the fullest possible understanding of the issues and interests at stake and the widest possible debate on the policy measures that should be adopted.’

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor T.D., the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross T.D., and the Minister for Tourism and Sport, Patrick O’Donovan T.D., launched the public consultation on the resale of tickets for entertainment and sporting events on 20 January 2017.

The consultation was undertaken in response to public concern at the resale of tickets for major entertainment and sporting events at a price often well in excess of their face value. The consultation paper looked in detail at a number of relevant aspects of ticket resale, including –
§ the workings of the primary and secondary ticket markets for entertainment and sporting events,
§ how tickets sold or allocated through the primary ticket market end up for resale on the secondary ticket market and who puts them for resale,
§ the legislation regulating ticket resale in Ireland, other EU member states, the US and other countries, and
§ what different stakeholders do, or do not do, to address the issues and concerns raised by ticket resale.

The consultation paper sought the inputs and views of interested parties on possible measures aimed at securing fairer access to tickets for consumers. A total of 24 responses have been received to the consultation, including submissions from sporting organisations, promoters and primary and secondary ticketing services providers.

Patronage of New Primary School in Dun Laoghaire Awarded to Educate Together

Mary Mitchell O’Connor, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and TD for Dun Laoghaire constituency, has welcomed the news that Educate Together has been awarded the patronage of Dun Laoghaire’s new primary school, to be opened in September 2017.

“Dún Laoghaire is growing and thriving thanks to the hard work of Dún Laoghaire Rathdown Chamber, Dún Laoghaire BID, Digital Dún Laoghaire and other local driving forces. This is bringing new people into the area.

“The changing demographic has been reflected in the decision about the patronage of this new school. The Educate Together movement began in Dalkey almost 40 years ago. From one school they have grown to, not just a national body, but an international body, with their first school in the UK opening in 2014. It is fitting that they have been awarded patronage of this new school.

“In accordance with the Programme for Partnership Government, the Government has a strong commitment to increase the number of multi-denominational and non-denominational schools across the country. This will continue as more schools are built to accommodate our growing population.

“As a former teacher, education is always on my radar and this new primary school is a vital addition to the area. Parental preference and demand played a big part in deciding patronage following a public consultation in late 2016. I am delighted that people took the opportunity to be part of that consultation and have their views reflected in the decision.

“September 2017 will be a special time for the students of Dun Laoghaire Educate Together Primary School, and their parents and families who have campaigned for this school for a long time. I look forward to seeing smiling faces at the school gates.


Minister Mitchell O’Connor welcomes continuing fall in Live Register

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, today (Friday) welcomed the publication of the latest Live Register figures, showing a continuing fall in the numbers of people signing on. The seasonally adjusted figures show a decline of 4,600 compared to the March figures and a decline of 42,123 compared to the April 2016 figures.

In unadjusted terms at the end of April, there were 263,417 persons signing on the Live Register.

The number of persons on the Live Register in April 2017 is the lowest number recorded in the seasonally adjusted series since October, 2008.
The figures also show that the live register has decreased in all eight regions of the country over the past 12 months.

Earlier this week, CSO figures showed that the unemployment rate fell to 6.2 % down from 6.4 % in March and from 8.4 % in April 2016.

Speaking from the US while on an IDA Marketing Programme Minister Mitchell O’Connor said “We have had very positive employment figures this week from the CSO. Earlier this week we saw a 9 year low of people unemployed with the unemployment rate now at 6.2% and now it is very positive to see that there is a continuous fall in the numbers of people on the live register. I’m greatly encouraged to see that numbers on the Live Register have fallen across all Regions. We are heading towards full employment and I am determined that our focus remains on continuing to create the right environment for job growth right across the country.

Minister Mitchell O’Connor publishes a survey on Irish SMEs views on Brexit and sets out action plan

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, has today published the findings of a survey of 1,045 SME business owners which was conducted in January by Behaviour & Attitudes, and has set out a number of actions being developed to support SMEs in responding to the challenges of Brexit.

Minister Mitchell O’Connor said: “While the survey results are of a point in time, the findings have helped inform the deliberations of my Department in considering what additional steps may need to be taken to support SMEs impacted by Brexit. Extensive engagement has also been undertaken with stakeholders including the Local Enterprise Offices, Enterprise Ireland, individual businesses and business representative bodies.”

The survey indicated that 49% of companies had experienced no impact on their business from Brexit, and a further 15% had experienced minimal impact. However, when asked to look forward over the next 18 months the percentage expecting no Brexit impact drops to 26%, with 17% (1 in 6) expecting a significant impact.

The Minister for Employment and Small Business, Mr Pat Breen TD, commented “The survey shows that the types of companies impacted most in the short term are small businesses (5 – 50 employees), those in the border region and those involved in food exports. Non-food exporting companies anticipate that they will be affected more significantly in the long term. The survey highlights the importance for SMEs to be Brexit ready.”
Working capital for firms exporting to the UK and indeed beyond to the EU and other markets has emerged as an issue for companies, as has a need to support competitiveness, innovation and market diversification.

The Minister said “My department has been working with the Department of Finance, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Enterprise Ireland and the SBCI to build an understanding of the business needs of companies in adapting to the challenges posed by Brexit and to develop appropriate and targeted responses to support them. Based on this work, I recently secured the agreement of the Cabinet Committee for Economy Trade and Jobs to progress the development of a proposed Brexit Working Capital Guarantee Scheme and to scope out the need for a longer term Business Development Loan Scheme which would assist firms in investing for a post-Brexit environment.”

Development of these proposed responses is at an early stage, and is subject to resources being agreed as part of the annual budget process, and with due regards to State aid rules.

The Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation is also exploring the development of a business advisory hub which would assist SMEs to make informed funding/investment decisions and helps them avail of private market solutions or existing State supports. This would build on the existing supports available and the advice and guidance offered by Enterprise Ireland and the Local Enterprise Offices and the Credit Review Office.

Minister Mitchell O’ Connor concluded “Brexit is an ongoing issue and I am conscious that the environment may change as the Brexit negotiations develop. I will continue to listen to the business community and to develop appropriate policy responses to help them in addressing the challenges of Brexit.”

“Brexit – the view of Irish SMEs” Survey here

Minister Mitchell O’Connor welcomes fall in annual unemployment rate from 8.4% to 6.2% from April 2016 to April 2017

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD today (Wednesday) welcomed the Monthly Unemployment figures for April published by the Central Statistics Office, showing that the official unemployment rate has fallen from 6.4% in March to April and from 8.4% in April 2016. The statistics also show:

· On a seasonally adjusted basis 4,800 fewer people were unemployed in April compared to March 

· 47,300 fewer people were unemployed in April compared with twelve months earlier 

· Unemployment among people aged between 15-24 has fallen by 0.8% in a month 

Commenting on today’s figures Minister Mitchell O’Connor said: “The continuing fall in unemployment for April is very welcome news. Seeing the unemployment rate for April drop down to 6.2% from 6.4% last month and from 8.4% this time last year is very positive. It is important that we continue with our policies to ensure that job creation continues to grow right across the country. The CSO also released this morning data on Foreign Direct Investment in Ireland in 2015 which shows that Ireland has become one of the most globalised countries in the world. We are going in the right direction to make full employment in Ireland a reality. As we know being able to earn a livelihood is all important, allowing people to take charge of their future,to make plans and to have hope and optimism. I would like everyone to have that opportunity for self-determination and fulfilment through employment.” 


Government approves priority drafting of legislation to address problems caused by the increased casualization of work and to strengthen the regulation of precarious work

Today, the Government approved draft legislative proposals brought forward by the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, and the Minister for Employment and Small Business, Pat Breen TD, in response to the commitment in the Programme for Government to address problems caused by the increased casualization of work and to strengthen the regulation of precarious work. The draft proposals, which address zero hour contracts, low hour contracts, banded hours and related matters, are targeted at low-paid workers in particular.

The proposals address the issue of employees on low hour contracts who consistently work more hours each week but whose contracts do not reflect the reality of their hours worked. The proposals also seek to ensure that employees are better informed about the nature of their employment arrangements and their core terms at an early stage in their employment. They include provisions aimed particularly at low-paid, more vulnerable workers. The proposals also include an amendment to the Organisation of Working Time Act which will prohibit zero hour contracts in most circumstances.

Commenting after the Government meeting, Minister Mitchell O’Connor said “I am very pleased that the Government has agreed to the priority drafting of this important legislation. It is important because it will improve the employment protections for low-paid, vulnerable workers in particular. It will also improve the predictability of hours of work and earnings for many employees whose contract of employment does not reflect the reality of the hours they work on a consistent basis.”

The Ministers’ proposals were informed by the University of Limerick study on zero hour contracts and low hour contracts as well as the extensive material and practical examples provided by respondents to the public consultation on that study conducted by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. These proposals have also been the subject of a detailed dialogue process with ICTU and Ibec over a number of months.

The Minister for Employment and Small Business, Pat Breen TD, said that “Developing policy proposals on employment rights is a complex matter. A balance needs to be found between protecting the rights of employees and avoiding unintended consequences on business, particularly small and medium sized businesses, which may negatively affect the competitiveness of the Irish economy. These proposals have been subject to broad consultation and represent a balanced response to the commitment in the Programme for Government to tackle problems caused by the increased casualization of work and to strengthen the regulation of precarious work. We have listened carefully to all sides to ensure that the proposals are workable in practice, while minimising the impact on businesses.”

The Ministers added “We look forward to engaging with all parties in the Oireachtas in pre-legislative scrutiny of these proposals.”
The draft legislation will now be referred to the Office of the Attorney General for priority drafting of a Bill.

Background to the proposals:
The draft legislative proposals brought forward by Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor and Minister Pat Breen are in response to the commitment in the Programme for Government to address the problems caused by the increased casualization of work and to strengthen the regulation of precarious employment.

The draft legislative proposals take account of the study conducted by the University of Limerick (UL) on the prevalence of zero hour contracts and low hour contracts and their impact on employees.

Following the UL Report, the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation sought submissions from interested parties by way of a Public Consultation. Some 48 responses were received from a wide range of stakeholders, including trade unions, employers and business representative bodies, public representatives, Government departments/agencies and non-Governmental organisations. The responses to the public consultation contained extensive material and practical examples of the impacts of the specific legislative changes proposed by UL, which have informed the draft proposals approved by Government.

Further, the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation engaged in a detailed dialogue process with Ibec and ICTU over the period October 2016 to March 2017 in an effort to secure the deepest understanding of the issues and implications before finalising proposals.

Core Issues being addressed by the draft proposals:

The draft proposals aim to address key issues which have been identified as being areas where current employment rights legislation can be strengthened to the benefit of employees, particularly low-paid, more vulnerable workers, without imposing unnecessarily onerous burdens on employers and businesses. The proposals address the following:

• Ensuring that workers are better informed about the nature of their employment arrangements and in particular their core terms at an early stage of their employment.
Currently 15 terms of employment are required to be given by employers to employees within two months. The UL study recommended that all 15 items be given on the first day. Following consultation, it is accepted that this would be excessive. Instead, it is proposed that employers must inform employees in writing, within 5 days of commencement of employment, of the following 5 core terms of employment:
1. the full name of the employer and employee,
2. the address of the employer,
3. the expected duration of the contract (where the contract is temporary or fixed-term),
4. the rate or method of calculating pay, and
5. what the employer reasonably expects the normal length of the employee’s working day and week will be.
Other required terms of employment should be provided within the current 2 month period.
The Ministers’ proposals also provide for the creation of a new offence where an employer does not provide the proposed statement of the five core terms of employment within one month of commencement of employment. Strengthening the sanction for non-compliance will help to promote better work practices and provide greater clarity around the essential elements of the employment relationship for both the employer and the employee.

• Strengthening the provisions around minimum payments to low-paid, vulnerable workers who may be called in to work for a period but not provided with that work.
It is intended to introduce a floor payment for low-paid workers who are called into work and then sent home in these circumstances. The UL study called for a minimum of three continuous working hours where an employee is required to report for work and if there is not, the employee should be paid for the three hours. The UL recommendation did not differentiate between low-paid workers and high-paid workers. It would result in disproportionate benefits for high-paid employees over low-paid employees and significant costs for employers. Furthermore, the UL recommendation did not take account of arrangements where it suits both parties to agree a contract of employment for less than three continuous working hours. The UL recommendation would set aside the possibility of individuals agreeing mutually convenient contracts for less than 3 continuous hours. Following consultation it is accepted that changes in this area should focus on improved compensation for low-paid workers and to this end, the Ministers’ proposals introduce a new minimum floor payment, of 3 times the National Minimum Wage or 3 times the minimum rate set down in an Employment Regulation Order (ERO), to compensate workers if they are called in to work but do not receive the expected hours of work.

• Prohibiting zero hours contracts, except in cases of genuine casual work or emergency cover or short-term relief work for that employer.
It is intended to delete the phrase ‘zero hours practice’ from the title of Section 18 of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997. The Ministers’ proposals will provide that an employer will no longer be able to engage an employee on a contract within the meaning of Section 18 (1)(a) or 18(1)(c) where the stated contracted hours are zero, unless it is genuinely casual work, emergency cover or short-term relief work for the employer. This proposal is to avoid the contagion of an increase in zero hours practices in this jurisdiction.

• Ensuring that workers on low hour contracts who consistently work more hours each week than provided for in their contracts of employment, are entitled to be placed in a band of hours that reflects the reality of the hours they have worked over an extended period.
The proposals provide for the creation of a new right for an employee, whose contract of employment does not reflect the reality of the hours worked on a consistent basis over a reference period of 18 months, to be placed in a band of hours that better reflects the actual hours worked over that reference period. This will provide greater certainty and a truer reflection of their hours of work and level of earnings, thereby addressing, in particular, difficulties employees may have accessing financial credit, including mortgages. The reference period of 18 months is considered sufficiently long to allow for the normal peaks and troughs of businesses, including those subject to seasonal fluctuations. The proposals also provide a mechanism for a review of the arrangement after a period of 18 months, i.e. after the employee has sought and been placed in a band of hours in exercise of their right under this proposal. An employee will be able to seek redress through the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) but redress will be limited to being placed in an appropriate band of hours. The proposal includes reasonable defences for employers to refuse an employee’s request where
– the facts do not support the employee’s claim,
– significant adverse changes have impacted on the business (e.g. loss of an important contract),
– emergency circumstances (e.g. business has had to close due to flooding),
– where the hours worked by the employee were due to a genuinely temporary situation (e.g. cover for another employee on maternity leave).

The provision will not apply to an employer who has entered into a banded hour arrangement through an agreement by collective bargaining with their employees.

• Strengthen the anti-victimisation provisions for employees who try to invoke a right under these proposals.
It is intended to provide against an employer penalising or threatening to penalise an employee for exercising any right under the proposed legislation.