Fair Work president resists Porter IR plan

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 1 & 5 : 8-Feb-21

Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter has rejected criticism of the federal government’s proposal for the Fair Work Commission to approve enterprise agreements within 21 days. FWC president Iain Ross has argued that this requirement is unnecessary and could result in unintended consequences, such as giving approval to workplace agreements that are subsequently found to contain technical or substantive defects. Justice Ross also warns that more applications for enterprise agreements may be withdrawn or rejected under the proposed reforms. The Senate will begin an inquiry into the omnibus industrial relations bill on 8 February.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EDUCATION, SKILLS AND EMPLOYMENT, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Office staff get to keep pandemic flex time

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: Online : 24-Dec-20

The Fair Work Commission has extended flexible working arrangements for employees who are covered by the clerks award until the end of June 2021. The ordinary hours of work for clerical employees while telecommuting were extended beyond traditional working hours earlier in 2020, in response to the coronavirus. The FWC has also introduced additional flexibilities with regard to the hours of work for clerical staff while working from home.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Fair Work backs penalty rates waiver

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 5 : 1-Jul-20

The Australian Services Union has failed in its bid to end flexible working arrangements for administrative employees who are covered by the clerks award. The ordinary hours of work for clerical employees while telecommuting were extended beyond traditional working hours in response to the coronavirus. The deal regarding overtime and penalty rates was initially slated to end on 30 June, but the full bench of the Fair Work Commission has agreed to extend it until the end of September.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN SERVICES UNION, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Pandemic pain to hit wage rises

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 15-May-20

Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry CEO James Pearson says the latest jobs data underlines the need for the minimum wage to remain unchanged in 2020. He warns that an increase in the minimum wage would jeopardise more jobs. Fair Work Commission president Ian Ross has flagged the possibility that a minimum wage rise could be delayed for companies that are receiving the JobKeeper wage subsidy. However, the ACTU opposes any delay; it is pushing for a minimum wage rise of four per cent, or $30 a week.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, ACTU

Win for unions in BHP workplace fight

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 16 : 11-May-20

A Fair Work Commission review panel has overturned a decision by deputy president Gerard Boyce to approve two enterprise agreements for employees of BHP’s Operations Services subsidiary. The Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining & Energy Union is among four unions that appealed against the December 2019 ruling. National secretary Tony Maher claims that BHP had intended to use the Operations Services business to reduce wages and conditions in the mining sector. The full bench of the FWC will decide whether to approve the disputed enterprise agreements.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, CONSTRUCTION, FORESTRY, MARITIME, MINING AND ENERGY UNION OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN WORKERS’ UNION-FEDERATION OF INDUSTRIAL, MANUFACTURING AND ENGINEERING EMPLOYEES

Bosses, union unite to save jobs

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 4 : 25-Mar-20

The Fair Work Commission has approved temporary changes to the industry award for hospitality workers in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The agreement between the United Workers Union and the Australian Hotels Association will allow employers to reduce workers’ hours to 60 per cent of full-time or regular part-time hours; employees can also be directed to take leave at half pay with just 24 hours’ notice. The changes to the Hospitality Award will initially be in place until 30 June. Employers and unions will seek similar changes to awards covering clerks and restaurant workers.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, UNITED WORKERS UNION, AUSTRALIAN HOTELS ASSOCIATION

Fair Work in grip of ALP influence

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 6 : 20-Feb-20

The Australian Mines & Metals Association has expressed concern that Labor appointees have dominated the rulings made by the Fair Work Commission in recent years. AMMA says that 94 per cent of cases heard by the full bench of the FWC between 2017 and 2019 were presided over by Labor appointees. AMMA CEO Steve Knott adds that four members of the FWC – all appointed by Labor – heard 87 per cent of the cases during this period. He says AMMA has raised the issue with Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, AUSTRALIAN MINES AND METALS ASSOCIATION (INCORPORATED), AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET

Employers push for Fair Work review

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 9 : 3-Feb-20

The Australian Mines & Metals Association has called for a review of the Fair Work Commission, as well as the appointment of seven new commissioners over the next year. AMMA CEO Steve Knott has outlined a number of concerns about the FWC in a letter to Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter. They include the lengthy delays in approving workplace agreements and claims that the allocation of full bench cases tends to favour Labor appointees.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, AUSTRALIAN MINES AND METALS ASSOCIATION (INCORPORATED), AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EMPLOYMENT, SKILLS, SMALL AND FAMILY BUSINESS, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT

FWC ruling a win for casual workers

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 6 : 24-Jan-20

The full bench of the Fair Work Commission has ruled that a casual sales assistant at Bed Bath N’ Table is entitled to pursue an unfair dismissal claim against the retailer. FWC deputy president Amanda Man­sini had previously ruled that the employee was not covered by unfair dismissal laws, as her employment was not regular and systematic. However, the full bench rejected Mansini’s reasoning and ruled that the case can proceed.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, BED BATH AND TABLE

No way to Wiggle out of sacking

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 3 : 25-Nov-19

The Fair Work Commission has thrown out an unfair dismissal claim by a Toyota dealership employee who took personal leave under false pretences. Sean Mamo had requested leave to care for his son, but his employer became aware that Mamo had in fact used the paid day off to take his son out, after photos of them at a Wiggles concert were posted on social media. FWC deputy president Alan Colman said the fact that Mamo claimed a payment to which he was not entitled was sufficient grounds for his dismissal.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, TOYOTA MOTOR CORPORATION AUSTRALIA LIMITED