Sex Discrimination

Area
Employment
Terms of Settlement
Policy change
Training
Offer of job exchange opportunities
Compensation
Nil
Complaint Summary
The complainant applied for a position in a religious educational organisation. The complainant was unsuccessful in getting the position, and on asking one of the interview panel members for feedback on her performance, was told that because the successful applicant was male and younger, the job had gone to him. The complaint felt that her qualifications and experience were better than the successful applicant’s and that she was treated unfavourably because of her age and sex. At conciliation, the employer agreed to a number of changes, including that their employees adhere to their recruitment policies and undergo discrimination and EEO training, and that the complainant be offered exchange positions at other educational organisations.

 

Area
Employment
Terms of Settlement
Report to Board
Investigation and review of practices and policies
Compensation
$40 000
Complaint Summary
A woman employed in the private sector alleged that she was terminated because of her sex. The employer informed her that a restructure had occurred and she would be made redundant when she returned from leave. Other female directors were also asked to leave, and she also alleged that they were paid less than male directors.
At conciliation the employer agreed to write a report to its Board outlining the nature of the woman’s complaint, investigate and review its employment practices and policies, and pay $40,000 compensation to her.

 

Area
Provision of goods, services or facilities
Terms of Settlement
Cultural awareness training
Assurances about future services
Compensation
Nil
Complaint Summary
A man complained that his wife had been discriminated against on the grounds of her sex, race and religious belief, whilst seeking advice about their son. The man stated that the professional whom they consulted persisted in trying to shake his wife’s hand, and made a number of comments that they should follow Australian customs if they intended staying in Australia, and telling them it is rude not to shake hands. The couple’s cultural and religious background does not permit such contact between men and women.
At conciliation the professional’s employer made an apology and paid $10,000 compensation. The respondent undertook to ensure that all staff and particularly the individual involved in the complaint receive cultural awareness training, and made assurances in relation to the provision of future services to their son.

 

 

Area
Employment
Terms of Settlement
Review of policies
Training for managers
Compensation
$5 000
Complaint Summary
A woman complained about a number of incidents of sex discrimination and sexual harassment by customers (including indecent exposure) and co-workers in the course of her employment. The woman alleged that her complaints to management resulted in no action being taken, either in relation to the customers or the co-workers. She also alleged victimisation because of her complaints in the form of bullying and general harassment.
At conciliation the employer agreed to pay $5,000 in compensation, review its policies for handling workplace grievances, and train its managers on the revised policies.

 

Area
Employment
Terms of Settlement
Written apology
Review of policies
Introduction of guidelines for interview process
Training on discrimination law
Compensation
$400
Complaint Summary
A woman alleged that during the course of an employment interview, she was asked several questions of a personal nature, including, whether she was married, her age, did she have children and whether she babysat her grandchildren. This was information that she felt uncomfortable providing because of the potential to discrimination against her on these grounds.
At conciliation the company agreed to provide a written apology to the woman and to review its policies and introduce guidelines to improve its employment interview processes to ensure that questions comply with anti-discrimination law. The company also agreed to undertake training on discrimination law, improve its interview practice and to pay the woman $400 in compensation.

 

Area
Provision of goods, services or facilities
Terms of Settlement
Signs in men’s toilet and at counter
Training for managers
Compensation
Nil
Complaint Summary
A man complained that he was unable to change his daughter’s nappy when visiting a restaurant because there were no nappy changing facilities in the men’s toilet, only the women’s. The man said that when he talked to the manager he was not receptive to the problem, and his wife had to change the baby instead whilst her meal went cold.
At conciliation, the restaurant agreed to put signs up in the men’s toilet inviting men to see the manager if they needed to change their baby’s nappy. The restaurant undertook to put a sign at its counter inviting all patrons to see the manager regarding any special requirements, plus undertook to make all managers aware that the function room or office should be made available for nappy changing as required.

 

 

Area
Employment
Terms of Settlement
Acknowledgement of distress
Policy change
Review of recruitment processes
Compensation
Complaint Summary
A female professional complained that despite superior qualifications and experience she was unsuccessful in her application for permanency following a period working as a casual. The successful candidate was a young male, and the woman claimed that he had significantly less experience and formal qualifications than her. She believed that her age and sex were reasons that she did not gain permanency. She also thought that her relationship status was a consideration, as she alleged that a member of the selection panel queried she was worried about their choice, given that her ‘husband had a good job’.
At conciliation, the employer acknowledged her distress and agreed to improve their recruitment processes, and amended their Employment Policy to make specific reference to the Discrimination Act and equivalent federal law. Commitments were also made by both parties to maintain a positive personal and professional relationship in the future.

 

Area
Employment
Terms of Settlement
Acknowledgement of distress
Harassment and Bullying training
Compensation
Nil
Complaint Summary
A young woman complained that her manager rubbed her buttocks while she was working at the reception desk, and had rubbed her arm several times leading up to this. She was so distressed that she left the workplace and did not wish to return. The manager denied that he touched her buttocks, instead maintaining that he ushered the woman aside to serve a customer during a busy period.
With the agreement of both parties the matter was conciliated and at the woman’s request, a shuttle process was conducted. During this process parties remain in separate rooms whilst the conciliator facilitates resolution by going back and forth between the parties. The matter was successfully conciliated with the manager acknowledging the complainant’s distress when he unintentionally touched her, and agreeing to attend ‘Harassment and Bullying’ training.

 

Area
Employment
Terms of Settlement
Compensation
Agreement to have no contact
Compensation
$9000
Complaint Summary
A woman alleged sexual harassment when her co-worker made repeated and continual romantic advances to her after she had informed him that his feelings towards her would not be returned by her in any way.
With the agreement of both parties the matter was conciliated and at the woman’s request, a shuttle process was conducted. During this process parties remained in separate rooms while the conciliator facilitated resolution by going back and forth between the parties. The matter was successfully conciliated with the respondent agreeing to pay $9000 in compensation.
Area
Employment
Terms of Settlement
Compensation
Anit-discrimination and harassment policies and training
Compensation
$2,500
Complaint Summary
A man alleged sexual harassment and discrimination based on his sexuality, claiming that his manager and co-workers made repeated sexual jokes and remarks about him, including about his sexuality. While he initially went along with the jokes and comments, after a period of time he asked his manager to stop. When the jokes and comments did not stop, the man resigned. At conciliation the respondent agreed to pay $2500 in compensation and to implement training and policies in the workplace around discrimination and harassment.