4.6 Employment Portfolio

The Employment Portfolio consists of the Department of Employment plus seven other agencies.

Total funding for the portfolio is $9.5 billion, comprising administered funding of $8.4 billion and departmental funding of $1.1 billion. There are around 1,800 staff in the Department of Employment, 637 in Comcare and 693 in the Office of the Fair Work Ombudsman.

Administered funding relates to payments to unemployed and programmes to assist people in finding jobs.

There are 36 pieces of legislation administered by the Minister, including the Fair Work Act 2009 and the Work Health and Safety Act 2011.

Table 4.6.1: Portfolio resourcing: Employment

Funding ($'000)

Staffing

Entity

Departmental

Administered

Total

ASL

Department of Employment

               257,631

           8,396,289

            8,653,920

         1,819

Comcare

               582,990

                            -

               582,990

             637

Fair Work Commission

                 81,589

                            -

                  81,589

             353

Office of the Fair Work Building Industry Inspectorate

                 24,131

                            -

                  24,131

             100

Office of the Fair Work Ombudsman

               117,747

                       200

               117,947

             693

Safe Work Australia

                    9,524

                 10,726

                  20,250

             104

Seafarers Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Authority

                             -

                       132

                        132

             112

Workplace Gender Equality Agency

                    5,574

                            -

                    5,574

               33

PORTFOLIO (1)

1,079,186

8,407,347

9,486,533

3,851

Source: Department of Finance. 201314 Budget updated for machinery of government changes.
(1) As individual entity resourcing includes inter-agency transfers and payments, total resourcing for the portfolio may be overstated by this amount.

The Department of Employment is responsible for national policies and programmes that help Australians find and keep employment and work in safe, fair and productive workplaces. The Department is broadly grouped under its two main functions – employment and workplace relations.

Comcare is a federal work, health and safety regulator and insurer of workplace liabilities. Comcare’s programmes and services are used by more than 420,000 workers. Comcare is also responsible for managing the Commonwealth’s asbestos-related claims liabilities under the Asbestos-related Claims (Management of Commonwealth Liabilities) Act 2005

The Fair Work Commission is the national workplace relations tribunal responsible for administering provisions of the Fair Work Act 2009. Its role includes providing a safety net of minimum conditions, facilitating good faith bargaining and regulating the taking of industrial action. It was established in 2009.

Safe Work Australia was established as a statutory agency on 1 November 2009 under the Safe Work Australia Act 2008. It is the principal body leading the development of national policy to improve work health and safety and workers compensation across Australia. The agency is jointly funded by the Commonwealth and State governments.

The Seafarers Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Authority (otherwise known as the Seacare Authority) oversees Seacare, which is a national scheme of occupational health and safety (OHS), rehabilitation and workers’ compensation arrangements which applies to defined seafaring employees and – in relation to OHS – defined third parties.

The Workplace Gender Equality Agency is a Commonwealth Government statutory agency created by the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012. The Agency is charged with promoting and improving gender equality in Australian workplaces.

Chart 4.6.1 is a graphical representation of the relative size of bodies within the Employment Portfolio.

 

Chart 4.6.1: Employment

 

This chart shows the Department and Portfolio agencies, as described above, diagrammatically.

This chart shows the Department and Portfolio agencies, as described above, diagrammatically.