Breach of Workplace Rights
The majority of workplaces in Australia are covered by the Fair Work Act 2009. As a full- or part-time employee in Australia, you have rights that cannot be breached. As an employer in Australia, you have a duty to uphold the law and make sure you are providing a workplace that is in compliance with workplace rights laws.
The National Employment Standards (NES) introduced in 2010 lay out the minimum of what is required for employees with regards to workplace rights. Read on to find out more about these rights.
What are workplace rights and who has them?
Australia’s national workplace relations system covers the majority of Australian workplaces, but some are covered by state workplace relations systems. Click here to find out if your workplace is covered by the national workplace relations system.
Under Australian law, all part-time and full-time workers covered by the national workplace relations system are entitled to a number of workplace protective measures since the introduction of the NES laws.
These rights include protection from unfair or unlawful dismissal, a maximum of hours a salaried worker can be expected to perform per week, maternal/paternal leave, sick relative leave, the possibility of flexible hours and working locations, annual vacation leave, leave for mourning purposes, leave to perform charitable work (including jury service), public holiday leave, sufficient notice of termination or dismissal and redundancy pay.
Who is not covered under the NES laws?
Casual employees are not granted all of the same workplace rights as full- and part-time employees of a company. Casual employees are those that have no regular guaranteed hours at a company and are paid by the hour instead of by salary.
For example, casual workers do not, by law, have to receive dismissal notice or pay for being made redundant. They are also not granted, legally, the same amount of paid leave to care for sick relatives or for mourning purposes. That said, some employers may grant casual workers these rights by their own will.
What happens if your rights are breached?
If you feel that your rights have been breached, please refer to the Fair Work Information Statement for more information. You should take immediate steps to repair the situation and know that you are not wrong for doing so. The first step you should take is to contact your company’s HR department. If that does not solve the problem, you may need to consult a lawyer.
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