The Housing Industry Association (HIA) welcomes the announcement of the federal government’s plans to have the Senate pass a Bill to reinstate the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC).

HIA Industrial Relations spokesman David Humphrey said that HIA is urging all Senators including government, opposition and independents to pass the legislation when it is debated in the chamber next week.

The abolition of the ABCC by the previous government combined with the erosion of industry specific penalties has emboldened industrial militants, leading to a worsening of conduct on building sites. The construction industry needs an effective deterrent and a robust and independent enforcer of the rule of law.

Two Royal Commissions, the 2002 Cole Royal Commission and the current Heydon Royal Commission have catalogued systemic lawlessness and illegal conduct throughout the building industry. Some of these instances include the black-banning of certain building product suppliers and manufacturers; flagrant disregard for right of entry rules; coercive pattern bargaining and the use of stand over tactics against independent contractors; and non-unionised businesses.

He added that these tactics are unacceptable in other sectors of the Australian economy and similarly, should not be tolerated in the building industry.

Mr Humphrey concluded that the restoration of the ABCC will not only boost Australia’s productivity but also ensure law and order on building sites.