Discrimination & Harassment

Discrimination & Harassment

Discrimination is when a person treats another person differently because of one of the following traits:

  • Race
  • Colour
  • Sex
  • Age
  • Physical or mental disability
  • Parental or relationship status
  • Family or carer’s responsibilities
  • Pregnancy
  • Religious belief
  • Lawful sexual activity
  • Trade union activity

Why discrimination is harmful for your business

Several remedies and penalties for unlawful workplace discrimination are identified under the Fair Work Act 2009 and Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 (Qld). These include a maximum penalty of $33,000 for every contravention for a corporation, and $6,600 for every contravention for an individual involved in a breach. The Court or Commission may also include orders for injunctions and reinstatement.

There are different ways a discrimination complaint can be lodged and companies should be aware of the potential issues workplace discrimination can cause to the productivity and finances of a business.

We provide practical advice to companies to prevent and identify workplace discrimination and assist to:

  • Establish recruitment practices that comply with discrimination laws
  • Ensure workers are educated and adequately trained to understand the various grounds upon which discrimination is unlawful
  • Train managers to identify unlawful discrimination
  • Develop and roll out policies and procedures which set adequate standards for workers in the workplace
  • Deal with and defend complaints lodged by current and former employees regarding discrimination of an unlawful nature.


Workplace Bullying

Workplace bullying occurs when a person or group of people repeatedly behave unreasonably towards a worker or a group of workers and the behaviour creates a risk to health and safety. The Fair Work Act 2009 makes it very clear that bullying does not include reasonable management action carried out in a reasonable manner. Our team can assist in implementing reasonable management action strategies.

Workplace bullying may include any of the following negative behaviours:

Bullying in the workplace includes physical, verbal, social, or psychological abuse by an employer or co-worker. It can happen in any workplace from private companies and retail shops, to government offices. Workplace bullying is any unwelcome conduct that is repetitive, continuing, and persistent.

This includes:

  • Hurtful remarks to an employee
  • Aggressive or intimidating conduct
  • Teasing, practical jokes or initiation ceremonies
  • Displaying offensive material
  • Exclusion from work-related events
  • Spreading malicious rumours