A full Federal Court has found that a CFMEU official breached the Fair Work Act's "hinder or obstruct" prohibition for permit-holders when he "liberally" swore at a safety inspector, but rejected the ABCC’s argument that it was denied procedural fairness when the trial judge described former Commissioner Nigel Hadgkiss’s questioning of a witness as "inexcusable".
The High Court has confirmed that unions are entitled to run underpayment and other contravention cases for un-named classes of employees who are eligible for membership but are not members, paving the way for a pilots union to advance an adverse action claim on behalf of Regional Express cadets.
The Federal Court has rejected CFMEU argument that the Fair Work Act's explanatory memorandum compels a finding that union officials are entitled to exercise their entry rights to hold discussions with members and potential members before their shifts begin.
An AMWU organiser penalised this year for his role in a strike over alleged safety issues looks set to win a new entry permit, on the condition that he undergo training on the interaction of IR and OHS statutes and when it is lawful to stop work.
The ABCC says it is "carefully reviewing" a Federal Court finding that two CFMEU officials who flagrantly disregarded requests to show their entry permits did not breach the Fair Work Act's restrictions on entry to worksites because they were not seeking to exercise their lawful rights.
Unions are seeking the reinstatement of powers to inspect non-members' time and wages records, after their analysis of 200 job advertisements aimed at Chinese, Korean and Spanish-speakers showed that almost four out of every five pay less than the award.