find the latest legal job
Corporate Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Highly-respected, innovative and entrepreneurial Not-for-Profit · Competency based Board
View details
Chief Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Dynamic, high growth organisation · ASX listed market leader
View details
In-house Projects Lawyer | Renewables / Solar | 2-5 Years PQE
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: All Australia
· Help design the future · NASDAQ Listed
View details
Insurance Lawyer (3-5 PAE)
Category: Insurance and Superannuation Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Dynamic organisation ·
View details
Legal Counsel
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: North Sydney NSW 2060
· 18 month fixed term contract · 3-5 years PQE with TMT exposure
View details
Bullying case against Airservices expands

Bullying case against Airservices expands

Representing air traffic controller Kirsty Fletcher, Maurice Blackburn will seek to expand its claim against Airservices Australia in a Federal Court hearing today (5 December). Launched on 28…

Representing air traffic controller Kirsty Fletcher, Maurice Blackburn will seek to expand its claim against Airservices Australia in a Federal Court hearing today (5 December).

Launched on 28 July 2010, the Federal Court proceedings involve allegations by Fletcher that she was subjected to extreme bullying and sex discrimination by the management of Airservices Australia (ASA), a government-owned corporation.

"We believe that a substantial amount of pornographic material was stored on the ASA computer system and that an ASA manager distributed it to other managers and employees regularly over a period of years," said Maurice Blackburn principal Josh Bornstein in a statement earlier this year.

"There is case law establishing that women exposed to pornographic posters at work can pursue claims of unlawful discrimination. We see no reason why the result should be different where the pornographic images and video content are on display on computer screens of colleagues and managers. Our client was exposed to pornographic sexual images while at work. We believe that by allowing this to occur, Airservices breached the federal Sex Discrimination Act."

According to Bornstein, the amendments to the claim focus on three key areas.

"We allege that there was a widespread culture of sharing pornography in the workplace, including by managers who were aware that they were flouting workplace policies prohibiting such conduct," said Bornstein.

"Secondly, that there was a widespread culture of hostility to female employees, part-time staff and pregnant workers by Airservices Australia management, and finally an environment in which managers committed to 'back each other' when employees lodged grievances or made complaints about their employer."

Bornstein said ASA management failed to deal with intense bullying and discriminatory conduct by one manager.

"In this male dominated workplace, women were fearful of hostility, bullying, harassment, threats, abuse and discriminatory treatment," he said.

Represented by Blake Dawson, ASA said it terminated Fletcher's employment "due to an irretrievable breakdown in the employment relationship".

Earlier this year ASA said it had made "a number of attempts, without success, to assist Ms Fletcher to return to work through offers of retraining and redeployment" and that it had also made "several unsuccessful attempts to resolve Ms Fletcher's claims through mediation processes".

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Bullying case against Airservices expands
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Scales of Justice
Aug 16 2017
Urgent criminal law reforms can prevent ‘unwarranted acquittals’
Concerns about unfair prejudice arising from the use of tendency and coincidence evidence are mispla...
Aug 15 2017
Press Control-S on your firm
Promoted by BHL Software It’s now a truism that when your IT systems stop working, so does you...
Aug 15 2017
The Importance of Leadership Skills for Aspiring Lawyers
Promoted by LHD Lawyers Even the most prominent lawyers of our age (or ages past, for that matter...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...