The concept of the "farm gate" is virtual rather than physical in the horticultural sector, an FWC full bench has found in a coverage decision it backdated by eight years to ensure employers are not exposed to backpay claims.
In one of the first extended discussions about the capacity to include incidental matters in modern awards, the FWC has called for further submissions on how or whether to incorporate a standard clause that would permit employers to deduct up to five weeks pay when employees quit without giving sufficient notice.
FWC President Iain Ross says a one-day conference in Sydney on Friday will focus on unpaid domestic violence leave and a possible model term, with unions and employers yet to agree on how to define family and domestic violence.
The FWC is seeking feedback by the end of this month on model terms for unpaid family and domestic violence leave in modern awards and whether the proposed entitlement should be extended to perpetrators, while it is giving parties more time to reply to a report on family-friendly work arrangements.
After a national employer body suggested its industry's "blokey" culture means workers are unlikely to admit they are domestic violence victims, "let alone [seek] FDV leave under an award", the FWC yesterday set a September 1 deadline for submissions on whether modern awards should provide unpaid leave, ahead of hearings in October.
An FWC full bench has reserved its decision on an SDA application to include paid blood donor leave in five awards, after employers argued the entitlement has no place in the modern awards system and should be left for enterprise bargaining.