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Union hit with $720K pay-out after preventing employment of non-members

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HC Online | 02 Apr 2015, 08:39 AM Agree 0
The WA branch of the Maritime Union of Australia has been ordered to pay compensation to a couple who were denied employment because they were not union members.
  • Paul | 02 Apr 2015, 11:20 AM Agree 0
    Oh MUA!!!

    How can employers ever be expected to work with you on employee matters.
  • Estelle | 02 Apr 2015, 11:45 AM Agree 0
    Back in 1980 I applied for a position at an establishment which opened in 1981. I was told I had to join the union in order to work there, which I did (I knew nothing about unions then, nor what my entitlements were ). About 8 months after we opened we were having morning tea in our office when the subject of unions came up and we found out only 2 employees out of 9 in our office were not told they had to join the union (one of them was our boss). I can only imagine the rest of the establishment's staff members (approx. 140) and with the exception of the managerial staff were told the same. I can tell you our boss was not happy when he found out, and told us all if we wanted to resign from the union, that is a personal decision, and there would be no repercussions, our jobs were guaranteed. Needless to say we all resigned.
  • JIM | 02 Apr 2015, 12:15 PM Agree 0
    This comment is addressed to HC Online - you got your facts wrong. The amount payable by the MUA was actually in the order of $561,400. Yes, the judge did initially order compo of about $720k but he then qualified that by ordering one third of that amount to be paid by Skilled Offshore (Australia) to the Loves.

    C'mon HC Online - it's all there in black and white, you just have to read it. It's basic journalism to get your facts right.
  • Estelle | 02 Apr 2015, 12:51 PM Agree 0
    Sorry I meant to say we all resigned from the UNION. And don't get me wrong I strongly believe unions do some good sometimes and some employees depending of "where" they work should be union member. We live in a very lucky country and have laws to protect our employees but there are still some businesses out there that have complete disregard for these.
  • Craiglm68 | 02 Apr 2015, 11:27 PM Agree 0
    Interesting article, regardless of which $$ figures were right or wrong! Unfortunately, it's a sad indicator of the state of Australia's structures (perhaps the country's employer/employee paradigm?) around managing employees, and Unionism in general. As someone who has split roughly half their working life (HR) within Aus, and the balance across SE Asia and UK, it pains me to say that the Australian set up is very generally viewed as inefficient, expensive, and despite the vast amount of legislation and legal horsepower (heck, it's opened up a new strand of HR over the last 10-15 yrs) required to make it "work", the system is still very much open to political influence (including Union actions). As an impartial observer, I would wonder why many other countries around the world (no more or less "lucky") than Australia, are operating at a similar (or greater) level of workforce efficiency, without the burden of legislative and HR policy/process (and of course much small Union presence). It's interesting to note that those few truly "International" Australian companies (one of which I've worked for) that have a material footprint elsewhere in the world, they all leave these "Australian People Practices" at home. If it is a case of the Australian psyche, society, culture etc demands that we still need the "Fair Work" set up, and indeed a dominant union culture, perhaps the question is "Why hasn't Australia grown up with the times over the last 15 yrs"....why has nothing improved? Contentious perhaps, but interesting food for thought.
  • Bek | 07 Apr 2015, 01:34 PM Agree 0
    JIM - HCA did actually mention this. From the article:
    'Skilled Offshore – formerly Offshore Marine Services – was ordered to pay the MUA a third of the compensation for its role in refusing the couple work'
  • BEK | 13 Apr 2015, 08:32 AM Agree 0
    JIM - HCA did actually mention this. From the article:
    'Skilled Offshore – formerly Offshore Marine Services – was ordered to pay the MUA a third of the compensation for its role in refusing the couple work'
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