Adverse action

Adverse action is certain types of action that is unlawful if it is taken for particular reasons. The FW Act describes what types of action is adverse action.

Adverse action taken by an employer includes doing, threatening or organising any of the following:

  • dismissing an employee
  • injuring an employee in their employment
  • altering an employee’s position to their prejudice
  • discriminating between one employee and other employees
  • refusing to employ a prospective employee
  • discriminating against a prospective employee on the terms and conditions in the offer of employment.

The full meaning of ‘adverse action’ is described in section 342 of the FW Act.

Legal Case
The Federal Court on 12 November 2019 penalised the CFMMEU $38,000 and two of its officials a total of $12,500 after they organised a work stoppage at a $30 million Brighton apartment project over demands for a larger site shed and dedicated female toilet.
31 August 2018
News
The ABCC has commenced proceedings in the Federal Court against labour hire company, Corestaff WA, and contractor, Gumala Enterprises, alleging they discriminated against a worker because of his age.
26 April 2019
Legal Case
The ABCC commenced proceedings against the CFMMEU and three of its officers, including WA State Secretary Michael Buchan, alleging they organised unlawful industrial action across three Perth Airport rail sites and were involved in a picket at the head contractor’s office.
29 April 2019
Legal Case
The ABCC* took court action against the plumbing division of the CEPU after a Bendigo-based plumbing company alleged it had been threatened with exclusion from a number of local construction projects unless it signed an enterprise agreement with the union.
31 August 2018
News
The Federal Court in Brisbane has today imposed $58,500 in penalties against the CFMMEU, its State Secretary Michael Ravbar and fellow union official Andrew Sutherland over their unlawful action on the Legacy Way Port Connect Project in 2012.
15 April 2019
News
The Federal Circuit Court in Brisbane has found Forest Meiers Construction liable to pay $200,000 in compensation for taking adverse action and discriminating against a tiling subcontractor because they did not have an enterprise agreement with the CFMMEU.
2 July 2019
News
The ABCC has commenced proceedings in the Federal Court against the CFMMEU and its shop steward, Kevin Pattinson, for allegedly preventing an electrician and apprentice from working on a Melbourne site because they were not members of a union.
25 March 2019
News
A New South Wales concrete pumping and placement company has been issued a formal warning for its breach of the 2016 Building Code after the Federal Court found the contractor unlawfully threatened to dismiss workers during enterprise agreement negotiations.
20 December 2018
News
The ABCC has taken legal action against the CFMMEU and its delegate James Fissenden alleging in March this year they threatened to prevent a shopfitter from working at the Sunshine Plaza Shopping Centre site in Maroochydore until he joined the union.
10 October 2019
News
The Federal Court has penalised the CFMMEU $38,000 and two of its officials a total of $12,500 after they organised a work stoppage at a $30 million Brighton apartment project over demands for a larger site shed and dedicated female toilet.
13 November 2019

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