INDUSTRY body the Victorian Transport Association has called for the Australian Road Transport Industrial Organisation to play a central role in any new version of “Safe Rates” and the now defunct Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal, should Labor take power next year.

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The call comes as Opposition assistant road safety spokesman Senator Glenn Sterle met with industry representatives, including the VTA, during the past week to discuss several issues including safety, remuneration, payment, productivity and other matters impacting freight and logistics.

“As the peak body tasked with representing the transport industry and its members on workplace and industrial relations matters, as well as matters before the Fair Work Commission, it is essential that ARTIO play a key role on any new version of the RSRT,” said VTA chief executive Peter Anderson.

“ARTIO – as a national body focussed on industrial relations for the road transport industry – is uniquely placed to offer a national perspective on remuneration and safety as it applies to transport operators and those they employ because of its close integration with state-based industry groups like the VTA and others around Australia,” he said.

“The RSRT was poorly implemented, and it is encouraging that Senator Sterle has openly stated a federal Labor Government would not rush into a similar model that doesn’t work. However, we do recognise the potential value of a system that ensures minimum standards of operation, safety and labour welfare, that has the endorsement of industry and operators.”

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