The Fair Work Commission has granted a real estate agent an order to stop bullying after she was subjected to aggressive lectures, ignored, belittled and defriended on Facebook by her Sales Administrator.
The District Court of South Australia has awarded damages of $75,000 plus an award for economic loss (yet to be determined) to an employee who was defamed after a co-worker sent an email to 2,300 colleagues stating that he was homosexual and looking for someone to engage in a sexual relationship.
An employee who took his former employer’s confidential and copyrighted information without authorisation, and used it for person gain, was ordered to pay $50,000 and his former employer’s legal costs.
The Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal has found that some of the questions asked when applying for a position on Woolworths’ recruitment website contravene the Anti-Discrimination Act in that they discriminate against potential employees on the basis of race, age and sex.
Fair Work Ombudsman v WKO Pty Ltd  FCA 1129
In the recent decision of Fair Work Ombudsman v WKO Pty Ltd  FCA 1129, the Federal Court imposed penalties on a child care operator and a director arising out of adverse action taken against an employee upon the disclosure of her pregnancy.
The NSW Administrative Appeals tribunal full bench has recently awarded a 75 year old bus driver $25,323 in compensation after he was dismissed because of his age. The dismissal occurred after a low speed accident involving the bus driver. Prior to this, in 2007, the bus driver had had his hours reduced because he was “getting old” and he was told “that it was time for him to retire”.
In May 2010 that Federal Government released its draft of the Paid Parental Leave Bill.
Under the draft Bill, from 1 January 2011, an eligible parent will be able to apply for up to 18 weeks paid parental leave at the national minimum wage, currently $543.78 per week.
Employers will be required to pay parental leave to employees who have been employed for at least 12 months prior to the expected date of birth or placement of adoption.
As part of the first reform of the Sex Discrimination Act, the Government has announced a number of proposed amendments to the Sex Discrimination Act.
Employers should take into account anti-discrimination legislation when deciding which employees to retrench, as the recent decision of Stern v Depilation & Skincare Pty Ltd  VCAT 2725 illustrates. In this decision, an employee was working part time during pregnancy due on medical grounds. The employer was found to have treated an employee less favourably due to pregnancy when she was selected for redundancy due largely to her part time status.
Workplace Relations: Fair Work Ombudsman v Zillion Zenith International Pty Ltd & Anor  FCCA 433
The Federal Circuit Court of Australia has ordered two franchisees of La Porchetta restaurant to pay fines of $167,409 each after failing to pay young employees their correct pay and entitlements and instead supplementing staff pay with free or discounted pizza and soft drinks.
The Federal Court has recently handed down its decision in the long running dispute between Endeavour Coal Pty Ltd (a BHP subsidiary) and the Association of Professional Engineers, Scientists and Managers, Australia. The application concerns APESMA’s application to Fair Work Australia for good faith bargaining orders in relation to its Appin Mine in New South Wales. The Federal Court’s decision is the second appeal in this dispute.
The Federal Court of Australia recently handed down a significant decision in relatio to the protections afforded to employees against adverse action by employers. The case is significant because it demonstrates the heavy burden that employers can have managing difficult and cantankerous employees. The principal difficulty is that the burden of demonstrating compliance with the general protections provisions lies on the employer.
Mr Misfud was denied redundancy payments owed to him under a collective agreement by his employer, Veolia Transport Sydney, and the issue arose whether they were thus liable to pay a penalty. Mr Misfud also petitioned for indemnity costs, claiming that Veolia's failure to respond to a settlement offer unreasonably furthered his legal costs.
On 16 April 2010 the Government released its response to the Productivity Commission’s report, “Executive Remuneration in Australia”.
The Government intends to introduce legislation in 2010 to implement these reforms, with the reforms to take effect on 1 July 2011. Further public consultation will be taken during 2010.
Workplace Relations: Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union (AMWU) – WesternAustralian Branch v Airflite Pty Ltd  FWA 1723
Fair Work Australia has made its first scope order under the new industrial regime.The order required an employer to bargain with the AMWU for separate deals to cover its employees in Victoria and Western Australia. Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union (AMWU) – WesternAustralian Branch v Airflite Pty Ltd  FWA 1723
The bargaining landscape confronting employers remains uncertain. In rejecting the CFMEU's application to have bargaining orders made against Tahmoor Coal, however, Commissioner Roberts of Fair Work Australia found that an employer is not in breach of its good faith bargaining obligations simply because, after extensive negotiations, the employer concludes negotiations are at an impasse. Commissioner Roberts stated that in this case, having reached this conclusion, the employer was entitled to refuse to meet further with the union.
Is an employer responsible for an employee’s injury which occurs at a private party held on work premises? The NSW Workers Compensation Commission (‘the Commission’) has recently answered “yes” to this question, in circumstances where the injured employee’s attendance at the party was motivated by work.
Different occupational health and safety (OHS) laws are currently in place in each State and Territory in Australia. As part of developing a seamless national economy and reforming OHS, the federal government has, with the cooperation of each of the States and Territories, initiated the process of “harmonising” OHS laws. Once the harmonisation process is complete, there will be uniform OHS laws throughout Australia.
Work Health and Safety: Kirk v Industrial Relations Commission; Kirk Group Holdings Pty Ltd v WorkCover Authority of New South Wales  HCA 1
The High Court of Australia has quashed convictions against an employer and a director in a decision that has far reaching implications for OHS prosecutions in NSW and throughout Australia.
Workers compensation: Namoi Cotton Co-Operative Ltd v Stephen Easterman (as administrator of the estate of Zara Lee Easterman)  NSWWCCPD 29
The estate of an employee who died whilst on her way home from work, after working 60 hours of night shifts over 5 days, has been awarded almost $500,000 after winning a workers compensation journey claim in the Workers Compensation Commission.
More Articles ...
- Unfair Dismissal: Cannon v Poultry Harvesters Pty Ltd  FWC 3126
- Frustration and unfair dismissal: Gerald Mahony v Dr Daniel J White T/A Catholic Education Office Sydney  FWC 1593
- Injury at work: Wright by his tutor Wright v Optus Administration Pty Limited  NSWSC 160
- Underpayments: Dulo Ram v D & D Indian Fine Food Pty Ltd  FCCA 389