13 May 2015 CFMEU official allegedly causes chaos on site after his demands not met

Director of Fair Work Building Industry Inspectorate v Michael Myles, CFMEU & Ors

Allegations as outlined in Fair Work Building & Construction’s (FWBC) statement of claim, these may vary over the course of the proceeding.

Background

10 April 2014

1.     FWBC alleges that at approximately 6.40 am CFMEU official Michael Myles attended the office of the Queensland University of Technology’s Kelvin Grove Project (the QUT Project), located on the corner of Musk Ave and Victoria Park Road, Kelvin Grove, Queensland (the site).

2.     FWBC alleges that when asked by the site manager whether he held a valid entry permit, Mr Myles responded that he did.

3.     FWBC further alleges that when the site manager advised Mr Myles that he needed to give 24 hours notice before he could enter the site, Mr Myles walked out of the office saying words to the effect that he was going to “consult” with two workers who were scheduled to work on the QUT Project that day.

4.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles then walked onto the site where he was again advised by the Site Manager that he needed to give 24 hours notice and to please leave the site.

5.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles refused to leave the site and said words to the effect that “(Worker’s name) is no longer a delegate and needs to get his head together”.

6.     FWBC further alleges that Mr Myles then walked around the site and talked to various workers who, up until Mr Myles spoke to them, had been performing work on the QUT Project.

7.     At approximately 7.15 am, the site manager advised Mr Myles that if he did not leave the site, the head contractor would call the police. FWBC alleges that Mr Myles responded that he would be holding a meeting with all the CFMEU members in the carpark adjacent to the site.

8.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles then conducted a meeting in the carpark with workers who were due to perform work on the QUT Project that day. The meeting lasted from approximately 7.45 am to 9.45 am.

14 April 2014

9.     FWBC alleges that at some time before 8.38 am Mr Myles entered the site, where the project manager asked Mr Myles: “Mick why are you on site?”. Mr Myles allegedly responded: “To meet with the guys”.

10.  When the project manager asked if he had a right of entry notice and whether he had any imminent safety risks or safety concerns Mr Myles allegedly responded “No, I’m just here to meet with the workers”.

11.  The project manager told Mr Myles he should leave the site, to which Mr Myles allegedly responded “No. I’m here to chat with the workers”.

12.  FWBC alleges that at approximatelty 9 am, Mr Myles organised and then conducted a meeting, in an area adjacent to the Lot 2 Building at the site, with a group of workers who were scheduled to perform work that day on the QUT Project.

13.  At approximately 9.05 am, the project manager approached Mr Myles and said words to the effect: “You’re on site illegally and you are trespassing because you have no right of entry permit. If you don’t leave the site, I will be calling the police”. FWBC alleges that despite this warning from the project manager, Mr Myles continued to hold discussions with the workers.

14.  At approximately 9.45 am police officers arrived at the site, by which time FWBC alleges that Mr Myles had moved to an area located off the site near the site boundary fence.

15.  Police spoke to Mr Myles and issued him with a “move on” order.

16.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 10 am, Mr Myles proceeded to conduct a meeting in the carpark with a group of workers who were scheduled to perform work on the project that day. The meeting continued until approximately 12 noon.

15 April 2014

17.  At approximately 6.30 am Mr Myles allegedly arrived at the site and said to the site manager that he would be holding “consultation meetings” with “formworkers” and “pumpies” at 6.45 am, with “others” to follow.

18.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 6.45 am, Mr Myles organised and conducted a meeting with a group of workers who were scheduled to perform work on the project that day, with the meeting continuing until approximately 8.45 am.

19.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 8.45 am, Mr Myles told the site manager that he would be holding another meeting with workers from 10 am, which he did, with the meeting continuing until approximately 11 am.

20.  At approximately 12 noon, Mr Myles allegedly said to the site manager words to the effect: “Things could return to normal if my access to site is not restricted, that is, no 24 hour notice and no sign in so I can carry on discussions with the workers. You’ve also got a need for an extra labourer to clean sheds and you’ve got to have flags on the cranes”.

21.  FWBC alleges that as a result of the meetings that Mr Myles held with workers on that day, a concrete pour and a concrete pour scheduled to take place did not occur, as the workers required for these jobs were engaged in the meetings.

22.  FWBC further alleges that Mr Myles knew that a concrete pour and a concrete place and finish was scheduled to occur on that day and that Mr Myles organised the 15 April meetings for a purpose which included disrupting the concrete pour and the concrete place and finish.

16 April 2014

23.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 6.15 am in the carpark, Mr Myles asked the site manager what the head contractor’s response was to Mr Myles’ statement the previous day (see paragraph 20).

24.  In response to the site manager telling him that there was “no chance” of that happening, FWBC alleges that Mr Myles advised the site manager that he was going to organise and conduct a “consultation meeting” with “scaffolders, pumpies and crane crew” and immediately proceeded to conduct a meeting with a group of workers with scaffold, concrete pumping, and crane crew workers who were scheduled to perform work on the project that day.

25.  FWBC alleges that the meeting went from about 6.45 am to 8.45 am.

26.  FWBC allges that at approximately 8.45 am, Mr Myles entered the site and showed the site manager his right of entry permit, but failed to provide an entry notice.

27.  FWBC further alleges that Mr Myles walked around the site and talked to various workers who, up until Mr Myles spoke to them, had been performing work on the project.

28.  It is alleged that at approximately 9.30 am, police officers spoke with Mr Myles and and warned him that he would be arrested if he went onto the site again.

29.  At approximately 10 am, Mr Myles allegedly conducted a meeting with a group of workers in the carpark, with the meeting continuing until approximately 12.30 pm.

30.  FWBC alleges that as a result of the meetings organised and conducted by Mr Myles, a second concrete pour and concrete place and finish that was scheduled to occur on that day did not take place.

31.  FWBC alleges that Mr Myles knew that a concrete pour and a concrete place and finish were scheduled to take place on that day and that he organised the meetings to take place for a purpose which included disrupting the concrete pour and the concrete place and finish scheduled to take place on the project that day.

27 May 2014

32.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 6 am, Mr Myles attended the site and organised a meeting in the carpark with a group of workers who were scheduled to perform work, with the meeting lasting for approximately one hour.

33.  FWBC further alleges that after the meeting, Mr Myles said to the site manager, words to the effect “The meeting has decided that as a result of your actions in causing safety issues on site, you need to be stood down from the site for one day and that you need to be re-inducted into (a specific sub contractor’s) procedures. The men are going to sit out and not do any work until you comply with this requirement”.

34.  At approximately 7.15 am during a meeting between Mr Myles, the project manager, the site manager and CFMEU delegates Ryan Whakaruru and Duncan McAllister, FWBC alleges that Mr Myles said words to the effect “We want [site manager] to be stood aside and for him to undergo re-induction.”

35.  The project manager refused to comply with the alleged demand.

36.  When the site manager advised that he was “happy to do some audits for your task risk assessments to get the guys back to work”, Mr Myles allegedly responded “No, we have decided, we want you stood aside and you to be re-inducted”.

37.  FWBC alleges that after the meeting, although none of them held a reasonable concern about an imment risk to their health or safety, each of the third to forty-second respondents (workers) left the site and did not perform any work on the QUT project for the rest of the day. They did not have permission from the head contractor or their respective employers to stop working.

Contraventions

1.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles and the CFMEU each contravened s.500 of the Fair Work Act on three occasions when Mr Myles intentionally hindered the head contractor in the performance of the QUT project.

2.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles and the CFMEU each contravened s.343 of the Fair Work Act on three occasions when Mr Myles organised meetings with the workers, with the intent to coerce the head contractor not to exercise its workplace rights.

3.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles and the CFMEU each contravened s.355 on two occasions when Mr Myles organised industrial action and threatened to organise industrial action.

4.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles and the CFMEU each contravened s.417 of the Fair Work Act when Mr Myles organised industrial action.

5.     FWBC alleges that each of the 3rd - 42nd respondents contravened s.417 of the Fair Work Act when they engaged in industrial action.

Maximum penalties

The maximum penalties available to the court in this case are $10,200 for an individual and $51,000 for a corporation, uncluding a union.Director of Fair Work Building Industry Inspectorate v Michael Myles, CFMEU & Ors

Allegations as outlined in Fair Work Building & Construction’s (FWBC) statement of claim, these may vary over the course of the proceeding.

Background

10 April 2014

1.     FWBC alleges that at approximately 6.40 am CFMEU official Michael Myles attended the office of the Queensland University of Technology’s Kelvin Grove Project (the QUT Project), located on the corner of Musk Ave and Victoria Park Road, Kelvin Grove, Queensland (the site).

2.     FWBC alleges that when asked by the site manager whether he held a valid entry permit, Mr Myles responded that he did.

3.     FWBC further alleges that when the site manager advised Mr Myles that he needed to give 24 hours notice before he could enter the site, Mr Myles walked out of the office saying words to the effect that he was going to “consult” with two workers who were scheduled to work on the QUT Project that day.

4.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles then walked onto the site where he was again advised by the Site Manager that he needed to give 24 hours notice and to please leave the site.

5.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles refused to leave the site and said words to the effect that “(Worker’s name) is no longer a delegate and needs to get his head together”.

6.     FWBC further alleges that Mr Myles then walked around the site and talked to various workers who, up until Mr Myles spoke to them, had been performing work on the QUT Project.

7.     At approximately 7.15 am, the site manager advised Mr Myles that if he did not leave the site, the head contractor would call the police. FWBC alleges that Mr Myles responded that he would be holding a meeting with all the CFMEU members in the carpark adjacent to the site.

8.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles then conducted a meeting in the carpark with workers who were due to perform work on the QUT Project that day. The meeting lasted from approximately 7.45 am to 9.45 am.

14 April 2014

9.     FWBC alleges that at some time before 8.38 am Mr Myles entered the site, where the project manager asked Mr Myles: “Mick why are you on site?”. Mr Myles allegedly responded: “To meet with the guys”.

10.  When the project manager asked if he had a right of entry notice and whether he had any imminent safety risks or safety concerns Mr Myles allegedly responded “No, I’m just here to meet with the workers”.

11.  The project manager told Mr Myles he should leave the site, to which Mr Myles allegedly responded “No. I’m here to chat with the workers”.

12.  FWBC alleges that at approximatelty 9 am, Mr Myles organised and then conducted a meeting, in an area adjacent to the Lot 2 Building at the site, with a group of workers who were scheduled to perform work that day on the QUT Project.

13.  At approximately 9.05 am, the project manager approached Mr Myles and said words to the effect: “You’re on site illegally and you are trespassing because you have no right of entry permit. If you don’t leave the site, I will be calling the police”. FWBC alleges that despite this warning from the project manager, Mr Myles continued to hold discussions with the workers.

14.  At approximately 9.45 am police officers arrived at the site, by which time FWBC alleges that Mr Myles had moved to an area located off the site near the site boundary fence.

15.  Police spoke to Mr Myles and issued him with a “move on” order.

16.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 10 am, Mr Myles proceeded to conduct a meeting in the carpark with a group of workers who were scheduled to perform work on the project that day. The meeting continued until approximately 12 noon.

15 April 2014

17.  At approximately 6.30 am Mr Myles allegedly arrived at the site and said to the site manager that he would be holding “consultation meetings” with “formworkers” and “pumpies” at 6.45 am, with “others” to follow.

18.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 6.45 am, Mr Myles organised and conducted a meeting with a group of workers who were scheduled to perform work on the project that day, with the meeting continuing until approximately 8.45 am.

19.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 8.45 am, Mr Myles told the site manager that he would be holding another meeting with workers from 10 am, which he did, with the meeting continuing until approximately 11 am.

20.  At approximately 12 noon, Mr Myles allegedly said to the site manager words to the effect: “Things could return to normal if my access to site is not restricted, that is, no 24 hour notice and no sign in so I can carry on discussions with the workers. You’ve also got a need for an extra labourer to clean sheds and you’ve got to have flags on the cranes”.

21.  FWBC alleges that as a result of the meetings that Mr Myles held with workers on that day, a concrete pour and a concrete pour scheduled to take place did not occur, as the workers required for these jobs were engaged in the meetings.

22.  FWBC further alleges that Mr Myles knew that a concrete pour and a concrete place and finish was scheduled to occur on that day and that Mr Myles organised the 15 April meetings for a purpose which included disrupting the concrete pour and the concrete place and finish.

16 April 2014

23.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 6.15 am in the carpark, Mr Myles asked the site manager what the head contractor’s response was to Mr Myles’ statement the previous day (see paragraph 20).

24.  In response to the site manager telling him that there was “no chance” of that happening, FWBC alleges that Mr Myles advised the site manager that he was going to organise and conduct a “consultation meeting” with “scaffolders, pumpies and crane crew” and immediately proceeded to conduct a meeting with a group of workers with scaffold, concrete pumping, and crane crew workers who were scheduled to perform work on the project that day.

25.  FWBC alleges that the meeting went from about 6.45 am to 8.45 am.

26.  FWBC allges that at approximately 8.45 am, Mr Myles entered the site and showed the site manager his right of entry permit, but failed to provide an entry notice.

27.  FWBC further alleges that Mr Myles walked around the site and talked to various workers who, up until Mr Myles spoke to them, had been performing work on the project.

28.  It is alleged that at approximately 9.30 am, police officers spoke with Mr Myles and and warned him that he would be arrested if he went onto the site again.

29.  At approximately 10 am, Mr Myles allegedly conducted a meeting with a group of workers in the carpark, with the meeting continuing until approximately 12.30 pm.

30.  FWBC alleges that as a result of the meetings organised and conducted by Mr Myles, a second concrete pour and concrete place and finish that was scheduled to occur on that day did not take place.

31.  FWBC alleges that Mr Myles knew that a concrete pour and a concrete place and finish were scheduled to take place on that day and that he organised the meetings to take place for a purpose which included disrupting the concrete pour and the concrete place and finish scheduled to take place on the project that day.

27 May 2014

32.  FWBC alleges that at approximately 6 am, Mr Myles attended the site and organised a meeting in the carpark with a group of workers who were scheduled to perform work, with the meeting lasting for approximately one hour.

33.  FWBC further alleges that after the meeting, Mr Myles said to the site manager, words to the effect “The meeting has decided that as a result of your actions in causing safety issues on site, you need to be stood down from the site for one day and that you need to be re-inducted into (a specific sub contractor’s) procedures. The men are going to sit out and not do any work until you comply with this requirement”.

34.  At approximately 7.15 am during a meeting between Mr Myles, the project manager, the site manager and CFMEU delegates Ryan Whakaruru and Duncan McAllister, FWBC alleges that Mr Myles said words to the effect “We want [site manager] to be stood aside and for him to undergo re-induction.”

35.  The project manager refused to comply with the alleged demand.

36.  When the site manager advised that he was “happy to do some audits for your task risk assessments to get the guys back to work”, Mr Myles allegedly responded “No, we have decided, we want you stood aside and you to be re-inducted”.

37.  FWBC alleges that after the meeting, although none of them held a reasonable concern about an imment risk to their health or safety, each of the third to forty-second respondents (workers) left the site and did not perform any work on the QUT project for the rest of the day. They did not have permission from the head contractor or their respective employers to stop working.

Contraventions

1.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles and the CFMEU each contravened s.500 of the Fair Work Act on three occasions when Mr Myles intentionally hindered the head contractor in the performance of the QUT project.

2.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles and the CFMEU each contravened s.343 of the Fair Work Act on three occasions when Mr Myles organised meetings with the workers, with the intent to coerce the head contractor not to exercise its workplace rights.

3.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles and the CFMEU each contravened s.355 on two occasions when Mr Myles organised industrial action and threatened to organise industrial action.

4.     FWBC alleges that Mr Myles and the CFMEU each contravened s.417 of the Fair Work Act when Mr Myles organised industrial action.

5.     FWBC alleges that each of the 3rd - 42nd respondents contravened s.417 of the Fair Work Act when they engaged in industrial action.

Maximum penalties

The maximum penalties available to the court in this case are $10,200 for an individual and $51,000 for a corporation, uncluding a union.

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