Protection for retail workers

THE NSW Government has introduced a Bill to Parliament that proposes stronger penalties for individuals who assault retail workers. The Crimes Legislation Amendment (Assaults on Retail Workers) Bill 2023 includes three new offences in the Crimes Act. The reforms aim to address the high rates of abuse and assault faced by retail workers, with penalties ranging from 4 to 11 years’ imprisonment depending on the severity of the assault. The government is committed to supporting workers and ensuring their safety in the workplace, sending a clear message that such behavior is unacceptable.

Support for insurance schemes

THE NSW Government faces a $669M bill to support the state’s insurance schemes, which have been mismanaged under the previous Liberal-National administration. The emergency funding aims to protect injured public sector workers and address issues such as historic liabilities for child sexual abuse, natural disaster damages, and workers’ compensation claims. The funding injection highlights the challenges inherited by the Minns Government and adds to the budgetary pressures. The reforms seek to improve return-to-work rates and create a financially sustainable workers’ compensation system. 

Venues reminded to minimise harm

LIQUOR & Gaming NSW (L&GNSW) has reminded venues in NSW to comply with gaming harm-minimisation requirements after discovering ATMs with credit card withdrawal functions at two Sydney venues. The Gaming Machines Act 2001 prohibits hotels and clubs with gaming machines from having ATMs with credit access. The Wentworth Hotel and the Earlwood Hotel were issued directions to remove the credit card functions from their ATMs. L&GNSW inspectors were able to withdraw money from credit accounts during their visits. Failure to comply with L&GNSW carries a maximum penalty of $5,500. 

Role in reducing skills shortage

ACCORDING to the Independent Tertiary Education Council Australia (ITECA), independent Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) in New South Wales are playing a crucial role in addressing skills shortages. Government data referenced in the ITECA State Of The Sector Report shows that independent RTOs support 80.8% of students in skills training. These providers outperform public TAFE colleges in terms of course completion rates, student satisfaction, and employment outcomes. The data indicate that students prefer independent training providers for quality skills training that leads to better job prospects.

Charity sector generates $10B 

THE Australian charity sector has generated $190B revenue and employs 10.5% of the workforce, according to the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC). The 9th edition of the Australian Charities Report reveals growth in charity revenue, assets, and donations during the 2021 reporting period. However, expenses and liabilities have also increased, and volunteering numbers have declined. The report highlights the significant contribution of small charities, with 65% operating on annual revenues under $250,000 and a third having less than $50,000 in revenue. 

Coles raises $8M for MND

COLES has raised $8.3M for FightMND’s Big Freeze 9 campaign, bringing its total fundraising for Motor Neurone Disease (MND) research to over $30M in six years. Shoppers contributed by purchasing beanies, Coles Brand Australian Fresh pork products, or Peters Icy Pole Lemonade 8-packs, or by making donations at the checkout. The funds will be invested in research projects for MND treatments and improving the lives of those affected by MND. Coles considers the Big Freeze campaign its largest annual community fundraiser and expressed gratitude to customers and suppliers for their support.

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