We are delighted to announce that the Thomson Reuters’ IR & Workplace Relations Conference is taking place on 28 May 2024 in Melbourne and Online. The conference will explore and address the key issues in IR and employment law.
Employers face a multitude of legal challenges as employment laws and policies rapidly evolve, HR professionals need to stay abreast of the latest legal developments and navigate these challenges. A raft of measures is affecting casuals, contractors, gig workers, labour hire, right to flexible work, conducting effective employee investigations, as well as the implications of industrial relations reforms, and the introduction of criminal penalties for ‘wage theft’.
This is a must-attend event for anyone dealing with the grey areas and challenges in employment legislation and regulation.
For event enquiries, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Welcome from the Chair
Melissa Scadden, Managing Partner, Justitia Lawyers & Consultants
Changes to Labour Relationships: casuals, labour hire and the gig workforce.
What the Fair Work Legislation Amendment (Closing the Loopholes) Bill 2023
• Casual employee pathways implications and practical tips
• Advantages and disadvantages of engaging a contractor for labour-hire.
• Labour hire agreements and avoiding the pitfalls of “sham” contracting.
• Gig economy and transport worker employment changes from FWC
Nick Ruskin, Partner, K L Gates
Preventing employee underpayments: wage theft or payroll mistake and new penalties Secure Pay Jobs Act
There is a spate of recent high-proﬁle wage underpayments cases have shown that no industry is immune from lost wages. Whether instances of underpayment are deliberate, misinterpretation of Australia’s complex awards or payroll function error, organisations need to protect themselves from wage underpayment risk:
• New penalties Secure Pay Jobs Act
• Practical considerations in employee underpayments
• Criminalisation of wage theft in Queensland and Victoria
• Implications for accessorial liability for wage theft for managers
Adam Foster, Partner, Colin Biggers & Paisley Lawyers
Networking and refreshment break
Reducing workplace psycho-social risk: stress, aggression, bullying. Violence and safeguarding employee well-being – recent amendments
• Recent amendments across the states and territories
• Changes to model WHS laws by SafeWork Australia
• Enforcement and penalties by WHS regulators
o Work-related stress
o Bullying and harassment
o Workplace violence
o Organisational culture and leadership
o Work-life balance and workload
• Employers’ obligations for psycho-social signs and symptoms
Catherine Dunlop, Partner, Maddocks
Anticipating changes to the workplace culture: has flexible work become a non-negotiable right?
• Recent changes to working from home and encouraging employees to return to workplace
• Employee privacy
• Right to Disconnect Bill to the National Employment Standards
• Determining ‘reasonable’ and ‘unreasonable’ additional hours
Erin Hawthorne, Partner, Seyfarth
Lunch and networking break
Positive duty and workplace sexual harassment prevention
• Outlining the key reforms to the prohibition against sexual harassment in the workplace
• Case examples of sexual harassment claims in the Fair Work Commission
• Update on the Australian Human Rights Commission’s enforcement of the positive duty
• Strategies for implementing a preventative approach in the workplace
• What’s next – additional recommendations from the Respect@Work report
Kellie-Ann McDade, Partner, Baker McKenzie
How to conduct an effective workplace investigation
• Reviewing complaints, investigations, and disciplinary action processes
• Undertaking compliance reviews of existing systems, policies, and procedures
Joel Zyngier, Principal, Gilchrist Connell
Performance management, disciplinary procedures, terminations and preventing unfair dismissal cases.
• Restructuring and redundancies: difficult decisions ahead
• Performance management, disciplinary procedures
• Attending to serious misconduct
• Termination and preventing unfair dismissal cases.
• Lessons from recent court decisions
Madelaine August, Partner Moray Agnew Lawyers
Networking and refreshment break
Modern Awards, Enterprise Agreements, and collective bargaining
• Drafting single-enterprise, multi-enterprise, and Greenfields agreements
• Preparing essential statutory documents
• Negotiating with trade unions
• Arbitration in the Fair Work Commission
• Update on Modern Awards
David Woodman, Partner, MinterEllison
Best practice in employment agreements
• Including providing short- or long-term labour hire from a labour supplier or individual workers; giving advice to host firms and agencies regarding labour agreements; mitigating statutory liability risk to companies and agencies; and advising on the benefits and risks of labour hire.
• Preventing unfair dismissal cases
Chris Molnar, Partner, Kennedys
CLOSING REMARKS FROM THE CHAIR AND END OF CONFERENCE