Australia: Federal Election Reforms

We’re delighted to have launched our Australian Federal Election Reforms – IR Policy and the 2019 Federal Election hub. Look forward to weekly additions to this site focusing on the practical impacts for business in the face of the upcoming election.

This week, Rohan Doyle considers Enterprise Bargaining – if it’s ‘Broken’, is there a Fix Ahead? 

In case you missed last week’s article, Anthony Longland investigated the ALP Industrial Relations Policy. Discover more by clicking here. Continue reading

UK: Government response to sexual harassment report: New statutory Code of Practice and more consultation

The Government has today published its response to the Women and Equalities Select Committee report published in July of this year (see our blog post here) on sexual harassment at work.  It has noted the lack of data and research on this issue, as highlighted by the Committee, and therefore, for the most part, its response is to consult and collect more data in order to identify the most effective interventions.  However, it has agreed with the Committee that a new statutory Code of Practice should be introduced, to be developed by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).

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Australia: Fair Work Amendment (Family and Domestic Violence Leave) Bill 2018 receives royal assent

The Fair Work Amendment (Family and Domestic Violence Leave) Bill 2018 passed both houses of Parliament on Thursday 6 December 2018 and also received royal assent on Tuesday 11 December 2018.

The Bill inserts a new entitlement in the National Employment Standards for all national system employees to five days of unpaid family and domestic violence leave within a 12 month period. The entitlement commenced common Wednesday 12 December 2018 (Commencement Date).  The Bill does not preclude employers applying their own additional domestic and family violence policies and practices (e.g. offering paid leave). Continue reading

Australia: The federal Modern Slavery Bill becomes law

The Modern Slavery Bill 2018 (Cth) (Bill) was passed into law on 29 November 2018. It is expected to commence in January 2019.

The Bill creates an ongoing obligation for ‘Reporting Entities’ to file a modern slavery statement (Statement) – being a report on the steps the entity has taken to assess and address risks of modern slavery in its operations and its supply chains during a reporting period.  To discover what you need to know and how to prepare for the commencement of this Bill, click here.

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Australia: Key findings from the Senate’s review of WHS laws

A Senate Committee has concluded its deliberations regarding its review into the prevention, investigation and prosecution of industrial deaths. A sense of ‘back to the future’ arises in considering many of the Majority’s recommendations. The Majority report recommends giving Unions the right to commence criminal prosecutions, an increase in statutory timeframes for bringing prosecutions, a bigger stick, more offences, higher penalties. This will certainly support the groundswell for industrial manslaughter offences to be introduced. There were some other issues which crept in – including a dramatic broadening of the meaning of ‘officer’, and a formal prohibition on insurance policies providing indemnity for penalties (which is a view HSF supports).

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Australia: Overview of Labour Hire Licensing in Australia

There have been a number of recent developments to licensing schemes in Queensland, South Australia and Victoria. Most notably, the South Australian government has recently announced it intends to repeal the Labour Hire Licensing Act 2017 (SA) and is no longer accepting licence applications.

Please click the map below for a summary noting the current status of licensing schemes around Australia at a State and Federal level.

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France: changes to French Works Councils requirements

As a reminder, following the Macron Reforms of 22 September 2017, all companies with 11 or more employees must put in place a Social and Economic Committee (a “CSE”) by 31 December 2019.

This means that:

  • companies with between 11-49 employees who did not previously have an obligation to have a Works Council must now organise elections; and
  • companies with an existing Works Council must organise elections for a CSE

before 31 December 2019. Continue reading