In our blog HR and the law: recent updates to workplace sexual harassment, we outlined that the Federal Government released a Roadmap for Respect which focused more on employers taking proactive, positive steps to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace.
The Fair Work Commission has asked for a delay in the rollout of the new orders, warning that there could be an increase in the number of claims. They have sought this delay because they have insufficient funds to deal with this potential increase in demand. there are three main reasons why they want to delay the introduction.
- Due to the changes now coming under their antibullying jurisdiction they predict a huge rise in claims
- Claims require case management and the ability to find a resolution for the applicants
- Increase in public awareness regarding the changes will impact on the number of claims.
With all this additional workload for the Fair Work Commission there has been no additional funding provided. The government believes there is sufficient funding provided.
So, who is right? Employer groups have been quoted as saying the proposed new orders provide alternative avenues for complainants rather than progressing through longer legal proceedings, the government states they have provided sufficient funding and are responding to the need to tighten the laws, however, the body who administers the complaints is asking for time.
Not sure how these changes and subsequent rollout impact your business? We can help. Contact HR on Call today