HR News in Brief: Support people at meetings not a legal right

by Human Capital22 Apr 2014
Support people at meetings not a legal right
The right to have a support person present at disciplinary meetings and dismissal processes is not the right to an advocate, according to the Fair Work Commission. The commission confirmed that there are limits to what a support person can do after a case in which an employee claimed she had no choice but to resign after a meeting with management about her performance and conduct. She claimed she was not given advance notice of the issues to be discussed and that while she was invited to have a support person present, they were not allowed to speak on her behalf. The Full Bench of the commission determined that she had resigned voluntarily and noted that the Fair Work Act 2009 doesn’t give an employee any right to have an advocate speak on their behalf at meetings with management.   

Swiss to vote on highest minimum wage
Swiss workers will spend the next month deciding how to vote on a referendum concerning a new minimum wage of 22 francs per hour, the equivalent of AUD$26.65. If passed, Switzerland would have the highest minimum wage in the world – however, only about 10 per cent of workers in the nation are actually on the minimum wage. Polls in early April indicate that opinions are split on the issue -  one firm’s survey shows 52 per cent of voters intend to vote yes on the proposal, while another major pollster showed the same percentage intended to vote no.

Multimillion-dollar severance package for fired executive
Being fired isn’t always a bad thing, if you walk away with a US$58million severance package, like former Yahoo chief operating officer Henrique de Castro. The International Business Times reported that de Castro only held the role for 15 months and was fired in January when CEO Marissa Mayer decided he wasn’t the right person for the job. Yahoo disclosed the size of his golden parachute in a regulatory filing. According to the Associated Press, the company’s board said most of the package was related to expenses it incurred to entice him away from Google and to make up for some stock awards he gave up by leaving Google. 


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