Equal Opportunity Policy

The Australian Workers’ Union is an equal opportunity employer. The Organisation regards the needs for reconising, accepting and utilizing the diverse skills and talents of its workforce as vital to its continued success. To do this, it strives to foster an environment which supports and respects differences and encourages growth of all employees. If a complaint is made, Senior Officials are committed to supporting the complainant and respondent, restoring a harmonious working environment and ensuring the complainant is not made to suffer in any way for having made a complaint.

Federal and State legislation make it unlawful to discriminate against another person in various circumstances.

Equal opportunity means ensuring equal access based on merit. The Australian Workers’ Union does not and will not unlawfully discriminate in our business dealings on the basis of:

  • Gender
  • Physical Features
  • Age
  • Medical Record
  • Disability (Physical/Mental)
  • Pregnancy of Potential Pregnancy
  • National Extraction or Social Origin
  • Colour
  • Marital Status
  • Industrial Activity
  • Family Responsibilities or Parent/Carer Status
  • Religious Belief
  • Sexual Preference/Lawful Sexual Activity Impairment
  • Personal Association with people with certain
  • Political Opinion/Belief or activity attributes

Discrimination is bad management. It precludes the Organisation from benefiting from the talents of all employees and the different skills and experiences they bring to the workforce.

Discrimination can also occur as a result of failure or refusal by a Senior Official to grant opportunity or confer a benefit on alleged discriminatory grounds, or due to the incorrect implementation or abuse of Organisational policies and procedures.

This policy relates to recruitment (including recruitment advertising), employment conditions, compensation and benefits, training and educational opportunities, promotions, transfers, terminations and all other aspects of employment.

This policy also encompasses Affirmative Action legislation and principles, which aim to counter inequities between men and women in all aspects of employment by, for example, encouraging men and women to enter into non-traditional occupations.

All employees have an obligation to ensure that the EEO Policy is complied with and all Senior Officials are obliged to provide the necessary leadership and guidance to other employees.

The Australian Workers’ Union will take all possible steps to ensure that an employee is not victimized and/or subjected to ridicule or embarrassment for voicing concerns about these issues or making a complaint.

In looking to the future, the Organisation intends to improve upon its success by ensuring all employees understand and behave in accordance with the policy of Equal Employment Opportunity.

Harrassmant and Workplace Bullying Policy

The Australian Workers’ Union strives to be the best provider of employee representation in Australia. The Organisation recognises that the quality, motivation and performance of its people are the key factors in the achievement of its business objective. Ensuring a professional environment, free of Discrimination, Harassment and Workplace Bullying is critical to the achievement of the Organisational goal.

Harassment can occur as a result of a single incident or a pattern of behaviour where the purpose or outcome is a hostile, offensive or intimidating work environment. Conduct can amount to harassment regardless of whether or not that conduct was intended to cause offence, humiliation or to threaten another person.

Harassment encompasses a broad range of physical, written or verbal behaviour, which can include, but is not limited to the following:

  • Physical, verbal or emotional abuse
  • Ethnic or racist insults
  • Derogatory ethnic or racist jokes
  • Slurs or taunting, intended to provoke an employee
  • Offensive printed material
  • Offensive information transmitted electronically, e.g. Internet
  • Workplace pranks which have the effect of humiliating an employee
  • Sexual Harassment (Refer Sexual Harassment)

Workplace bullying is distinguished from occasional episodes of conflict because it involves the repeated and systematic targeting of employees. Workplace bullying is defined as repeated unreasonable behaviour directed toward an employee or group of employees that creates a risk. Such behaviour which can include, but is not limited to the following:

  • Humiliating putdowns
  • Unreasonable rudeness
  • Systematic targeting
  • Scapegoating of employees

The Australian Workers’ Union prohibits any form of harassment or workplace bullying by any individuals (i.e. employees and visitors) and views such actions in the most serious manner.

The Australian Workers’ Union will take disciplinary action against individuals who, after investigation of a formal complaint, have found to engage in actions or behaviour amounting to harassment or workplace bullying. The disciplinary measures adopted will depend on the circumstances but may range from a formal warning to termination of employment. Visitors who have been found to have committed acts of harassment or workplace bullying may be banned from the Organisations premises.

The Australian Workers’ Union will take all possible steps to ensure that an employee is not victimised and/or subjected to ridicule or embarrassment for voicing concerns on this issue or making a complaint.

Any individual, who feels he/she has been the subject of harassment or workplace bullying, should bring it to the attention of his/her Branch Secretary, the National Secretary or EEO contact officer. Every complaint will be investigated confidentially, thoroughly and in a timely manner.

Sexual Harrassmant Policy

State and Federal legislation make it unlawful to sexually harass another person in the workplace.

Sexual harassment takes place when a person makes an unwelcome advance or engages on other unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature in relation to another person in circumstances where a reasonable observer would have anticipated that the second person would be offended, humiliated or intimidated.

Sexual harassment can occur as a result of a single incident or a pattern of behaviour where the outcome is a hostile, offensive or intimidating work environment. Sexual harassment can be committed regardless of whether or not the behaviour concerned was intended to cause offence, humiliation or distress. The Australian Workers’ Union prohibits acts of sexual harassment by any individuals (i.e. employees and visitors).

Sexual harassment encompasses a broad range of physical, written or verbal behaviour, which can include, but is not limited to the following:

  • Unwelcome physical contact or attempted physical contact, e.g. kissing, touching (some of these may constitute assault)
  • Insinuations about an individual’s private life
  • Sexual insults or jokes of a sexual nature
  • Unwelcome sexual advances, suggestions, innuendoes or requests for sexual favours
  • Offensive printed material
  • Offensive information transmitted electronically, e.g. Internet

Note: Cases of rape or violent sexual assault or other criminal offences (e.g. indecent exposure) should be referred to the police.

Senior Officials of the Organisation are committed to a thorough investigation of all formal complaints and will take appropriate disciplinary action against those individuals found to have committed acts of sexual harassment. The disciplinary measures adopted will depend on the circumstances but may range from a formal warning to termination of employment. Visitors who have been found to have committed acts of sexual harassment may be banned from the Organisations premises.

Any individual who feels he/she has been the subject of sexual harassment should bring it to the attention of his/her Branch Secretary, the National Secretary or EEO officer. Every formal complaint will be investigated confidentially, thoroughly and in a timely manner.

The Australian Workers’ Union will take all possible steps to ensure that an employee is not victimised and/or subjected to ridicule or embarrassment for voicing concerns on this issue or making a complaint.