What’s Been Happening in Australia in Relation to Sexual Harassment, Discrimination and Bullying from 19 – 25 February 2018

TechnologyOne Accused of Discrimination and Bullying Culture
A former cloud project manager at TechnologyOne is suing the company for bullying, victimisation and discrimination. Ana Monteiro, who worked at there from 2015–2017, has filed a complaint with the Australian Human Rights Commission, and hopes they will investigate what she describes as a “bullying and sexist culture”. Edward Chung, the chief executive of TechnologyOne, has denied her allegations, saying that the company “treats all staff with integrity and fairness”. Furthermore, he says that her claims were investigated at the time they were made and found to be without merit. In a statement made through her lawyer, Ms Monteiro claims that she was aware of other victims of workplace bullying, “including at least two who have attempted to commit suicide as a result”. It has also emerged that another former employee, Behnam Roohizadegan, has been engaged in a legal conflict with TechnologyOne since 2016 over his own allegations of workplace bullying.

Christian Schools Association Defends Right to Dismiss Staff on Grounds of their Religious Beliefs
In a submission to the federal Religious Freedom Review, Christian Schools Australia has maintained that religious schools should have the right to fire staff based on their beliefs. The submission, made jointly with Adventist Schools Australia, defended the ability of church institutions to also hire staff, including teachers, based on their adherence to religious codes. In their own submission, Catholic Bishops called for federal anti-discrimination legislation to make stronger exemptions to allow for the exercise of the freedom of religion. In contrast, Just Equal, among other pro-LGBT organisations, is seeking the reversal of laws, which permit discrimination based on sexual orientation.

WA Government Media Advisor Claims her Dismissal was Tied to Allegations of Bullying
A media advisor for the WA Health Minister was not dismissed as payback for making allegations of workplace bullying, according to Premier Mark McGowan. Jane Grljusich, who worked under Health Minister Roger Cook, complained when his chief of staff, Erik Locke, sent her inappropriate messages. In the emails and texts she received, Mr Locke had called her “Kim Jong Lard” and made suggestions as to how she could afford liposuction. In her letter to Mr McGowan, Ms Grljusich has described the way in which she was treated as “horrific”. Despite his assurances, Mr McGowan could not explain why Ms Grljusich’s claims had become the subject of an independent inquiry as opposed to being referred to the Public Sector Commission.