Collective bargaining rights restored for film industry workers, 'Hobbit Law' not being scrapped

The Government have pledged to restore collective bargaining rights for screen sector workers, rather than repealing the "Hobbit Law". 

Orlando Bloom, pictured as an elf in the trailer for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. Source: 1 NEWS

Scrapping the Hobbit Law was intended to be part of Labour's first 100 days in Government. The Employment Relations (Film Production Work) Amendment Bill saw most screen workers treated as contractors.

Workplace Relations Minister Iain Lees-Galloway said the proposed model "will deliver workplace rights to more workers than a straight repeal of the 'Hobbit law' would have.

"Instead we are ensuring more workers gain workplace protections, while providing certainty and flexibility for our internationally-competitive screen sector."

For more on this story, watch 1 NEWS at 6pm. Source: 1 NEWS

Mr Lees-Galloway said a Film Industry Working Group "unanimously agreed on a model that means screen sector workers can continue as contractors, but will gain the right to negotiate collectively using good faith bargaining and a dispute resolution scheme".

"These are similar to the protections that employees enjoy, but most of our screen sector workers have missed out on for the last nine years."

He called it a "win-win solution", that would be introduced into Parliament later this year and expects it to be passed by mid-2020. 

"The model will apply to screen production work such as on films, drama serials, commercials and video games. Its exact coverage will be determined during drafting in consultation with the industry."