Category Archives: Legislation

Fair Work Education Programs

Recently Julia Gillard (Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations) announced that funding offers have now been made for Fair Work Education and Information program.

Essentially the Government is working to ensure that all everyone understands the new workplace relations system and a total of $12.9m has been offered in grants to the organisations below.

workplace-relations

ACT Chamber of Commerce
Aged and Community Services Australia
Australian Mines and Metals Association
Australian Chamber Alliance
Australian Council of Trade Unions
Australian Hotels Association
Australian Human Resources Institute
Australian Industry Group
Australian Retailers Association
Australian Road Transport Industrial Organisation
Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia
Job Watch
Master Builders Association
Master Grocers Association
National Farmers’ Federation
National Retail Association
Recruitment and Consulting Services Association Ltd
Restaurant and Catering Australia
Victorian Automobile Chamber of Commerce

These organisations will provide information and education services to employees, employers and small business operators about the Fair Work Act and how it will affect them.

For more information on these education programs you can visit the Fair Work Act website.

You may have noticed that AHRI have been provided with funding in the above allocation, and as a HR Professional you might like to check their services out.

AHRI has teamed up with Holding Redlich lawyers to develop a Fair Work Assist Resource Centre.

Resources provided by AHRI include:

• A free and interactive website
• Online fact sheets
• Online discussion forum
• ‘Ask the expert’ (and receive a response within three days)
• Phone hotline (to speak to an industrial relations expert)
• 45 information seminars
• AHRI e-learning module (available later in the year).

Get a head start and visit the website today which is http://www.fairworkaustralia.ahri.com.au/

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Are you aware of the changes to probation under the Fair Work Act?

Recently, the Australian Federal Government made changes to the industrial relations legislation which means that as of July 1st 2009 the Fair Work Act 2009 will replace the Workplace Relations Act 1996
How does this impact you in HR?

2006-630-adjusting-the-legislation

Under the Workplace Relations Act 1996 companies were able to set a probation period of six months or more if it was reasonable having regard to the nature and circumstances of the position. This will not be available under the Fair Work Act 2009.

Probation periods have been removed from the new Act and instead a ‘qualifying period’ of six months has been set for larger organisations (greater than 15 employees). Under the new legislation, employees will only be required to complete a six month qualifying period with a new employer during which time employees are excluded from bringing unfair dismissal proceedings against former employers.

If organisations continue with current policies which outline a probation period of longer than six months, and the manager decides to terminate the person after six months there will no longer be a protection from unfair dismissal proceedings being brought against the organisation.

Hence, you might want to review your current probation policy and update it!

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