Rejecting a return-to-work plan may lead to disability discrimination risks, as demonstrated by a recent @VCAT decision where an employer was ordered to pay $45,000 for pain and suffering, along with over $190,000 for lost income and entitlements, reinforcing the growing trend of substantial awards for anti-discrimination law breaches.
As mentioned in our previous post, working remotely has become a hot topic, prompting organisations to carefully navigate requests for flexible arrangements. In a recent decision, the Fair Work Commission (FWC) outlined some factors that may justify denying a working from home (WFH) request.
Sexual harassment remains worldwide an alarming issue, transcending borders, cultures, and industries. Australia is no exception. Shockingly, 1.3 million Australian women experienced sexual harassment during 2021-2022, while one in three Australian workers has faced such behaviour at their workplace in the past five years.
A recent decision by the Fair Work Commission (FWC) highlights the importance of conducting thorough and fair workplace investigations. In Crook v CITIC Pacific Mining Management Pty Ltd, the FWC reinstated an employee who had been dismissed for engaging in inappropriate conduct of a sexual nature towards a new female trainee, following a flawed investigation.
Time is running out to review your organisation’s fixed term contract arrangements before legislative amendments come into effect. Book a one-hour session with one of our senior lawyers to consider whether your organisation needs to take any further measures before 6 December.
A recent Fair Work Commission decision reinforces that employers must take care with their investigations of misconduct, and determine whether a work practice has been condoned by management before sacking staff. In this case, the Commission reinstated three employees who had been summarily dismissed due to a policy breach.
Employers may think that an employee’s injury sustained outside of work has nothing to do with them. However, a recent decision re-affirms the obligations on employers under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth) (DDA) to provide reasonable adjustments for an employee, even where an injury was sustained outside of work.
From 6 December 2023, the use of fixed term contracts will be significantly limited. This change is part of the Secure Jobs, Better Pay amendments to the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth). Read our latest blog on how this may affect you as an employer.
Flexible working arrangements will become part of the Australian workplace norm from 6 June 2023. This is when the flexible work provisions of the Fair Work Act 2009 are set to change. Read here for more on how this can impact you as an employer!
With COVID cases on the rise, should you pay staff for time spent adhering to infection control policies?
In Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation v Jeta Gardens (QLD) Pty Ltd, the Commission found that an employer was liable to pay staff for on-site RAT testing 15 minutes before each shift. Being in an aged-care, high-risk scenario, the decision is specific to its facts. However, it provides useful insight about how the FWC is handling these scenarios.
Recent cases in the United States show the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recovering significant compensation from various corporations for victims of discrimination and victimisation (referred to as retaliation in the US). Compensation was payable for violations of Title VII of the US Civil Rights Act 1964.
The Newest Addition to the NES: What do employers need know about the new entitlement to paid family and domestic violence leave?
The upcoming amendments to the Fair Work Act 2009 change the current five days of unpaid leave for family and domestic violence (FDV) to a paid entitlement of ten days’ leave. This will be an entitlement arising under the National Employment Standards (NES).
Part of a Councillor’s role is to engage in robust debate on the issues of the day and advocate on matters in the interests of their communities. Unfortunately, at some Councils the poor conduct of individual Councillors is getting in the way of Council business. As leaders in their community Local Government Councillors need to foster a culture where they can be effective decision makers. Read about how the internal arbitration process in the Local Government Act 2020 works to address workplace culture issues and how some Councillors are taking the lead to get things done.
The burden falls on employers to eliminate sexual harassment: How the Bakers Delight Investigation can be a model for compliance
Emily Howie, General Counsel and Director of Dispute Resolution at the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission (VEOHRC) recently spoke to members of the Justitia community about the VEOHRC’s investigation into the adequacy of Bakers Delight Holdings’ (Bakers Delight) framework for preventing and eliminating sexual harassment in the workplace.
Want to know the story behind Justitia's ongoing success in employment law? Tune in to The Boutique Lawyer Show's recent Podcast episode where our Managing Partner, Melissa Scadden, and Founding Partner, Sarah Rey share the elements that fostered a successful law firm! Click here to listen to the full Podcast!
Our Top Three Takeaways: Lessons for Employers About Denial & Discrimination From Professor Anita Hill
On Saturday morning, we were in a note-taking frenzy when US Professor Anita Hill participated in a Q&A with Trauma Cleaner author and legal academic Sarah Krasnostein. The session was part of this year’s international guest-speaker line up for the Melbourne Writer’s Festival (MWF).
In a landmark move, the Victorian Government has indicated that it will restrict the use of non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) in cases of workplace sexual harassment. This follows one of the 26 recommendations made by the Ministerial Taskforce on Workplace Sexual Harassment (Taskforce) investigating the issue. The purpose of the Taskforce was to propose reforms that will “better prevent and respond” to workplace sexual harassment.
You may not be aware that the Equal Opportunity Act has been amended in recent times. Most recently, from 14 June 2022, religious bodies and schools are not allowed to discriminate against people based on their “personal characteristics” of sex, sexual orientation, lawful sexual activity, marital status, parental status or gender identity: in employment decisions or decisions about school students.
The Occupational Health and Safety Amendment (COVID-19 Vaccination Information) Regulations 2022 (Vaccination Regulations) commenced operation on 12 July 2022. The Vaccination Regulations amend the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations 2017 (OHS Regulations) to provide for the circumstances where an employer may collect,record, hold and use COVID-19
Will your organisation still be compliant when the new Child Safe Standards commence on 1 July 2022?
In mid-2021, the Victorian Government announced it was updating the seven (7) Child Safe Standards (Standards) and replacing them with eleven (11) new Standards. Organisations were given 12 months to prepare and comply with the new Standards.