Sorry rugby chiefs pay Folau millions

Original article by Remy Varga
The Australian – Page: 1 & 7 : 5-Dec-19

Rugby Australia has agreed to a confidential settlement with sacked player Israel Folau, who had been seeking $14m in compensation. He is expected to be paid several million dollars to settle the dispute, with Rugby Australia issuing an apology for any hurt or harm caused to Folau and his wife. Folau in turn has used a joint statement to apologise for any hurt or harm his social media comments had caused. The Australian Christian Lobby has advised that people who donated money for Folau’s legal defence will be entitled to a pro-rata refund.

CORPORATES
RUGBY AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN CHRISTIAN LOBBY

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

Religion bill will make it harder to sack people

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 4 : 30-Aug-19

Attorney-General Christian Porter released a draft of the federal government’s proposed Religious Discrimination Bill on 29 August. Porter says the legislation aims to protect people on the basis of their religion, but does not give them a "licence to discriminate against other people", or to engage in vilifying or harassing speech. Under the proposed legislation, a company with turnover of at least $50 million that sacks someone for expressing a religious view that breaches a condition of their employment will need to show that retaining the employee could cause it "unjustifiable financial hardship”.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT

Gillard’s IR laws need rework: Lib MPs

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 5 : 20-Aug-19

Liberal MPs Tim Wilson, Jason Falinski and Andrew Bragg have called for changes to unfair dismissal laws that were introduced when Julia Gillard was the Labor government’s industrial relations minister. The trio argues that Labor’s Unfair Dismissal Code has also been ineffective, and the number of unfair dismissal cases heard by the Fair Work Commission has risen sharply under Labor’s reforms. A recent review of the code by Small Business Ombudsman Kate Carnell recommended 15 changes to it.

CORPORATES
LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, AUSTRALIA. OFFICE OF THE AUSTRALIAN SMALL BUSINESS AND FAMILY ENTERPRISE OMBUDSMAN

Unfair dismissal: retreat over pay

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 2 : 7-Aug-19

Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Kate Carnell says the Small Business Fair Dismissal Code is "ambiguous and open to interpretation". She adds that small businesses would be in a better position to comply with the code if ambiguous language were removed. Carnell has also argued the case for the Fair Work Commission to establish a small business division, although she now favours reviewing the maximum compensation for unfair dismissal after a revised code has been operating for at least 12 months.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. OFFICE OF THE AUSTRALIAN SMALL BUSINESS AND FAMILY ENTERPRISE OMBUDSMAN, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK OMBUDSMAN, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EMPLOYMENT, SKILLS, SMALL AND FAMILY BUSINESS

Business urges new work rules

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 25-Jun-19

Prime Minister Scott Morrison discussed the federal government’s industrial relations policy in a speech to the Chamber of Commerce & Industry of Western Australia on 24 June. Business leaders have outlined the workplace reforms they would like to see during the Coalition’s third term in office. Australian Mines & Metals Association CEO Steve Knott says an overhaul of the enterprise bargaining system should be a priority, as well as changes to the ‘better off overall test’. Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry CEO James Pearson in turn has called for changes to small business dismissal laws.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA (INCORPORATED), AUSTRALIAN MINES AND METALS ASSOCIATION (INCORPORATED), AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, ACTU, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF JOBS AND SMALL BUSINESS, WOOLWORTHS GROUP LIMITED – ASX WOW, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, THE AUSTRALIA INSTITUTE LIMITED. CENTRE FOR FUTURE WORK

BHP silent on reports driver of runaway 268-car iron ore train in Pilbara is pursuing claim of unfair dismissal

Original article by Stuart McKinnon
The West Australian – Page: Online : 11-Jan-19

BHP has advised that the train driver who was in charge of a Pilbara iron ore train that had to be derailed in November no longer works for the company. However, the resources group has declined to comment on reports that the driver intends to pursue an unfair dismissal case. BHP has indicated that mechanical failure and human error contributed to the incident in which it was forced to deliberately derail the train after it travelled for 50 minutes without a driver.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP

Unionist gets no joy over sacking

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 5 : 9-Jan-19

The full Federal Court has dismissed an application by former union organiser Nick Belan for a judicial review of the Fair Work Commission’s decision in his unfair dismissal case. The FWC had ruled in 2017 that the National Union of Workers had been justified in sacking Belan after he admitted to the trade union royal commission that he had used a union-issued credit card for personal expenses. Belan had contended that the transcript of his evidence before the royal commission was inadmissible in the FWC case.

CORPORATES
NATIONAL UNION OF WORKERS, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO TRADE UNION GOVERNANCE AND CORRUPTION

Upset customers, get sacked: Optus

Original article by Jennifer Duke
The Age – Page: 11 : 30-Oct-18

The Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman recently reported that the number of complaints from Optus customers increased by 35 per cent in 2017-18. Optus CEO Allen Lew has warned that employees who are found to have upset customers will be sacked, while staff who observe colleagues who appear to have upset customers are being urged to report them via Optus’s independently-run whistleblower phone line. Lew has told staff that customers are their "boss", not him.

CORPORATES
TELECOMMUNICATIONS INDUSTRY OMBUDSMAN LIMITED, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, TELSTRA CORPORATION LIMITED – ASX TLS, VODAFONE HUTCHISON AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, TPG TELECOM LIMITED – ASX TPM, MYREPUBLIC PTE LTD

Employer wins costs after baseless dismissal claim

Original article by Adam Zuchetti
mybusiness.com.au – Page: Online : 11-Sep-18

A woman who lost an unfair dismissal case against her former employer has subsequently been directed by the Fair Work Commission to pay their costs. Joan Obuchowski lost her claim against RNTT in May, with RNTT applying two weeks later for costs to be awarded in defending the case. In agreeing with RNTT’s application in the week beginning 10 September, FWC senior deputy president Jonathan Hamberger said Obuchowski must have known her case had "no reasonable grounds for success". Business groups note it is almost unheard of for employers to be awarded costs in such cases.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, RNTT, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF JOBS AND SMALL BUSINESS