Message from the ALP to the AMOU regarding 457 workers in the maritime industry

Response to AMOU Campaign

Dear [X],

Thank you for your email about Ship's Masters and Ship's Officers.

If there is a demonstrated oversupply of Ship's Masters and Ship's Officers in the domestic labour market, a Shorten Labor Government would immediately take steps to suspend the issuing of new subclass 457 visas and we would pursue removal of these occupations from the 457 Skilled Occupations List and the Consolidated Skilled Occupations List.

Labor knows that all Australians benefit from a productive, growing economy and we need to ensure that we have the skilled workers to support economic growth.

Yet as the number of temporary workers in Australia has increased, unfortunately, so too has the incidence of allegations of abuse and exploitation of these workers and reports that these visa programs are having an adverse impact on the Australian labour market.

Labor will require employers that nominate 457 visa workers under labour agreements, and as standard business sponsors, to meet labour market testing requirements under the Migration Act, consistent with Australia's international trade obligations. A Shorten Labor Government will also introduce more rigorous evidentiary requirements for labour market testing to be incorporated into legislation or associated program guidelines.

A Shorten Labor Government will require the Minister for Immigration, before entering a Labour Agreement, to have regard to whether the Labor Agreement will support or create Australian jobs - a new Australian Jobs Test.

Labor will have regard to the principles and objectives of the Australian Jobs Test for the duration of Labour Agreements. This includes redundancy arrangements and any demonstrable incidents of unconscionable or sham practices outside the Agreement that breaches the spirit and intent of the Australian Jobs Test.

The Australian Jobs Test will be additional to the requirement to conduct labour market testing for each individual position, not a substitute for that requirement.

For more information, please visit

Thank you for taking the time to write to me about this important issue.

Kind regards,

Information Services Unit

Australian Labor Campaign Headquarters