A court has declined to make a declaration agreed to by an employer for admitted breaches of the Fair Work Act, ruling that its repetition of adverse findings would not "have any educative or deterrent effect. . . at all".
In what is believed to be an Australian-first, the Victorian CFMMEU is seeking penalties of more than $4 million against four police officers and the civil construction giant McConnell Dowell for allegedly stopping union safety officials from inspecting "high-risk work" at a level-crossing removal project.
An employer association has begun probing the alliance between the AWU and the CFFMMEU's MUA division that seeks to build membership in the offshore oil and gas sector, arguing that it creates a conflict of the interest for the organisers involved.
A CFMMEU official has retained his entry permit despite being heavily fined for his part in a heated worksite stoush, the FWC finding he was acting on "genuine but mistaken" legal advice about his rights.
CFMMEU official Joe Myles has been hit with his second personal payment order in four months, the Federal Court today fining him $44,000 for a series of threats and actions over an unfavoured subcontractor working on a level crossing site in 2013 and 2014.
The CFMMEU is taking a building company to court for allegedly requiring 24 hours' written notice for permit holders wanting to investigate suspected safety breaches at a WA construction site unless the union sent someone qualified to carry out testing.
The ABCC is pursuing the CFMMEU and eight organisers for repeatedly refusing to show entry permits at a major Queensland road project on the basis they were responding to safety issues as "concerned citizens, not as union officials".
The big stick handed to the ABCC in the form of personal payment orders against contravening union officials has been whittled further with two Federal Court decisions reinforcing that past records and a clear appreciation of consequences must first be taken into account.
A Federal Court judge has evoked the memory of the BLF's deregistration in the course of handing out maximum fines to the CFMMEU for "deplorable" breaches by a past State branch president, suggesting that any organisation that fails to rein in aberrant behaviour "cannot expect to remain registered in its existing form".