What’s Been Happening in Australia in Relation to Sexual Harassment, Discrimination and Bullying from 17 – 23 October 2022

Is A ‘Neutral’ Workplace Dress Code Discriminatory?

Australian commentators have been interested in the recent European Court of Justice decision where a neutral dress code at a workplace was not ruled as direct or indirect discrimination based on religion or belief. The case concerned a Muslim woman wearing a headscarf who was denied interviewing for an internship because she would not take off her headscarf. The workplace required neutrality in the way that employees dressed. The difference in treatment will not constitute indirect discrimination if: (1) the internal rule is objectively justified by a legitimate aim; and (2) the means of achieving that aim are appropriate and necessary. This is relevant to the religious freedom debate that is underway in federal Australian politics.

Australia: Employment Relations Podcast #26 – Respect@Work Part 1: Does Your Organisation Understand Its Existing Obligations to Prevent Sexual Harassment In The Workplace?

Piper Alderman has an Employment Law for the Time Poor Podcast which has a conversation regarding recent updates in legislation in response to the Respect@Work report. The podcast addresses the way that workplaces are expected to manage workplace issues, whether it be bullying, harassment, mental health matters or other issues. The podcast covers Work Health and Safety principles and how they will apply to workplace issues of bullying and sexual harassment.

Census Reveals Migrants Tend to Be More Highly Educated. So Why Do They Find It Harder to Land Jobs?

The census results from the Australian Bureau of Statistics reveal that migrants in Australia generally held a higher level of education than those born in Australia. These figures included post-high school qualifications, with 63% of people born overseas having tertiary education experience. The highest of these were from people born in India or Bangladesh. This raises questions of discrimination as educated people who have moved to Australia are struggling to find work that reflects their expertise. The ABC article explores personal stories of some individuals with high level education backgrounds.

Teachers Failing to Address Racism In The Classroom: Report

The results of a survey conducted by Ubuntu Project have been released. Participants were Victorian students of an African background. The questions centred on their experience at Australian schools. The results show that only half of those that experienced discrimination reported the issue to a staff member. Of these students, 88% felt that their complaint was not dealt with adequately nor was it taken seriously. The majority of African Australian students had indicated experiencing discrimination at school on the basis of their race and culture.

Thinking Private Renting Is Hard? First Nations People Can Be Excluded From The Start

A new publication from Swinburne University analyses the rental market and discrimination of First Nations renters. This affects the ability of individuals to work if they cannot get access to housing. The research examines the Victorian rental market and how Aboriginal people are disproportionately discriminated against. The research was conducted collaboratively by the Victorian Aboriginal Housing and Homelessness Framework and consulting with Aboriginal people across Victoria.

School Staff Welcome Proposed NT Anti-Discrimination Act Change

The Independent Education Union represents 17,000 staff from across the Northern Territory and Queensland. The union has expressed welcoming the NT government’s proposal to erase religious discrimination exemptions from the Anti-Discrimination Act. The union has advocated for this since 2017 at a NT government consultation. The union represents staff from non-government schools, many of which are religious. It evidences support from within the religious context for better protection of LGBT+ students and reconcile belief differences.