INDUSTRIAL ACTION: $600k PENALTIES IMPOSED ON UNION
The Federal Court of Australia imposed penalties of $600,000 on a union and 10 of its officials for arranging two days of industrial action at the employer’s construction site.
INDUSTRIAL ACTION: PENALTIES IMPOSED DESPITE UNIONS RESPONDING TO MEMBERS’ NEEDS
The Federal Court of Australia imposed penalties of more than $100,000 against three unions and their organisers for participating in unlawful industrial action and adverse action but acknowledged that unions only became involved “when they responded to the workers’ needs”.
Australian Building and Construction Commissioner v Automotive, Food, Metals, Engineering, Printing and Kindred Industries Union (The Australian Paper Case) (No 2) (2017) 69 AILR ¶102-785;  FCA 367
ENTERPRISE AGREEMENT: FWC APPROVES ENTERPRISE AGREEMENT IN SPITE OF UNIONS’ OPPOSITION
The Fair Work Commission approved the Commonwealth Members of Parliament Staff Enterprise Agreement 2016-2019 (enterprise agreement) despite the relevant unions arguing that the voting procedure was marred by several voting irregularities and that the enterprise agreement did not pass the “better off overall test” (BOOT).
ENTERPRISE AGREEMENT: FWC APPROVES ENTERPRISE AGREEMENT IN SPITE OF CFMEU’S SUBMISSIONS
The Fair Work Commission has approved the Moolarben Coal Operations Pty Limited – Moolarben Underground Mine Enterprise Agreement 2017 (enterprise agreement) in spite of the Construction, Forestry, Mining, and Energy Union’s (CFMEU) submissions that the employees did not genuinely agree to the terms of the enterprise agreement and that the enterprise agreement failed the “better off overall test” (BOOT).
WAGE REVIEW: COMMISSION GIVES PRELIMINARY DECISION ON NATIONAL WAGES
A Full Bench of the Fair Work Commission dealt with three preliminary issues as part of its annual wages review. In so doing, the full bench rejected a proposal to set a medium term target to ensure that minimum wages kept pace with median wages, rejected an application to terminate transitional instruments that preserved employee entitlements and declined to introduce special wages rates for disabled employees.
TERMINATION OF EMPLOYMENT: SUMMARY DISMISSAL OF DRUNK, DISORDERLY EMPLOYEE WAS UNFAIR
The Fair Work Commission reinstated an employee who was summarily dismissed for disorderly conduct during a weekend away.
ENTERPRISE AGREEMENTS: “ALLIANCE UNIONS” FAIL TO REPLACE TWO AGREEMENTS WITH ONE
The Fair Work Commission rejected an application for a scope order in which three unions sought an order that two enterprise agreements be incorporated into one.
Automotive, Food, Metals, Engineering, Printing and Kindred Industries Union known as the Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union; Australian Workers’ Union; Communications, Electrical, Electronic, Energy, Information, Postal, Plumbing and Allied Services Union of Australia v Qantas Airways Ltd t/a Qantas (2017) 69 AILR ¶102-780;  FWC 1526
COURSE OF CONDUCT: TWELVE-FOLD PENALTY INCREASE FOR BLOCKADE
The Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia has and allowed an appeal and held that a “lawful request” or “a party’s motivation for taking coercive industrial action” could not be considered as a mitigating factor by the courts when assessing penalties and ordered a twelve-fold increase in fines against the union for organising a blockade.
The Australian Industrial Law Reports (AILR) summarise industrial cases from all Australian jurisdictions on a weekly basis with links to the full text judgment provided by Austlii. Existing online subscribers are able to link through to the above mentioned decisions in Intelliconnect using the link provided. For a free trial please click here.