Australian Fair Pay Commission

Australian Fair Pay Commission

Australian Fair Pay Commission

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The Australian Fair Pay Commission (AFPC) was an Australian legislative body created under the Howard Government's "WorkChoices" industrial relations law in 2006 to set the minimum rate of pay for workers. Established to replace the wage setting functions of the Australian Industrial Relations Commission, the AFPC set and adjusted a single adult minimum wage, non-adult minimum wages (such as training wage), minimum wages for award classification levels and casual loadings. The AFPC was abolished in December 2009 when the wage setting function was given to the Minimum wage panel of Fair Work Australia.

Professor Ian Harper was the inaugural chairman of the AFPC, presiding over 4 commissioners: Mr Hugh Armstrong, Mr Patrick McClure AO, Mr Mike O’Hagan, and Professor Judith Sloan. In a speech to the Centre for Independent Studies titled "Christian Morality and Market Capitalism: Friends or Foes", Harper stated "The market is a means to an end rather than an end in itself" and "The trouble starts when one begins to treat market capitalism itself as a religion".

The profile of the members of this commission was different from that of the Australian Industrial Relations Commission which previously had responsibility for determining the above quantities. There was less representation on behalf of the trade unions, and less transparency in decision-making, making it possible...
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