FWC Full Bench to consider the meaning of ‘dismissed’ – an important decision for employers

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Regardless of whether the employment relationship has been terminated, a demotion involving a significant reduction in pay may constitute a dismissal that enables employees to seek an unfair dismissal remedy. In August 2021, the Fair Work Commission found that a shift manager employed by NSW Trains was ‘dismissed’ when his demotion resulted in a reduction… Read more »

Breaking down an employer’s ability to collect and store an employee’s vaccination status under the Privacy Act

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With a rising number of employees claiming that asking for their vaccination status is a ‘breach of their privacy’, it is important for employers to understand their rights and obligations under the Privacy Act. It comes as no surprise that many employers across Australia have commenced collecting their employees’ COVID‑19 vaccination status. However, on 30… Read more »

Queensland’s Cultural Heritage Acts are up for review – what does this mean for you?

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After a pandemic-related pause in March 2020, the Queensland Government has recommenced its review of the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2003 and the Torres Strait Islander Cultural Heritage Act 2003 (Cultural Heritage Acts) with the release of its ‘Options paper’ in December 2021. The paper seeks to build on the earlier stakeholder consultation and analysis,… Read more »

Australia’s first failed vaccine mandate – what does this mean for the future of mandatory COVID-19 vaccination directions?

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In an Australian first, the Full Bench of the Fair Work Commission has found that BHP’s vaccine mandate was not a lawful and reasonable direction. Why did it differ from recent successful vaccine mandate authorities and what does this mean for the future of mandated vaccine directions for employers? BHP’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate On 7… Read more »

Has your entity filed its modern slavery statement for 2021?

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Entities that carried on business in Australia and had a consolidated revenue above $100 million in FY2021 are required to submit a modern slavery statement prior to 31 December 2021. The Modern Slavery Act 2018 (Cth) commenced in 2019 and requires certain entities to submit annual modern slavery statements that set out how they are… Read more »

Queensland releases new exploration acreage for petroleum and gas and greenhouse gas storage

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On 24 November 2021, the Queensland Government released over 28,000 km2 of land for petroleum and gas, and greenhouse gas storage, exploration. Petroleum and gas exploration tender releases – PLR2021-1 Eight petroleum and gas exploration areas have been released across the Bowen, Surat/Bowen, Eromanga and Adavale basins: 343 km2 area (110 sub-blocks) located 92 km… Read more »

Parenting arrangements and Christmas – no cheer from the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia

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The most tumultuous time for separated parents is typically the annual stoush over the summer holiday arrangements and where the children will be on Christmas Day. If you have not reached agreement with the other parent and were hoping the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia would assist you in 2021; I have some… Read more »

Commencement of stop sexual harassment orders in the Fair Work Commission will provide new protections for workers

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From 11 November 2021, a worker who has been sexually harassed at work will be able to apply to the Fair Work Commission (Commission) for an order to stop the sexual harassment. It is now time for businesses to urgently review their sexual harassment policies and complaint handling processes. What is a stop sexual harassment… Read more »

No negligence during football game collision – due to proper supervision, school avoids paying almost $580,000 in damages

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A student’s negligence claim against a school following a football game collision has failed due to the school’s proper supervision and safe conduct of the game. In Mattock v State of New South Wales (NSW Department of Education) (No 2) [2021] NSWSC 1045, a student sued his PE teacher and the school following a ‘head… Read more »