Trade union activity

The Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 makes it unlawful to discriminate against a person because of their trade union activity.

The right of workers to belong to a trade union and participate in union activities, is protected by the Act. Trade union activity includes such things as being a union delegate, attending union meetings in a person's own time and participating in a Labour Day march.

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Trade union activity discrimination examples

  • A union delegate at a meat works felt that practices introduced by a new manager compromised workplace health and safety. When his concerns were ignored by the manager, the delegate called union meetings and encouraged workers to join the union. The manager wrote an adverse report about the delegate's work performance which had no basis in fact, and the delegate was been threatened with dismissal.
  • A union organiser discovered that some migrant workers were not being paid the award rate. When she assisted the workers to lodge complaints to a national regulator, her employment was terminated.

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Information and enquiry service

Individuals, employers and business operators can access the Commission's statewide telephone information and enquiry service.

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Making a complaint

Make a complaint to the Commission on the Complaint Form about trade union activity discrimination.

The complaint must be lodged with the Commission within 1 year of the discrimination happening.

The Commission's service is free.

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