ADR and industrial tribunals: innovations and challenges in resolving individual workplace grievances

Therese MacDermott, Joellen Riley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This paper analyses the dispute resolution practices of the federal industrial tribunal in dealing with individual workplace grievances, and examines the way in which these practices are changing and evolving, particularly under contemporary pressures to find more if normal and cost-effective methods of dispute resolution. It is based on interviews with past and present federal industrial tribunal members, and draws on their observations of changes and challenges in the dispute resolution methods for resolving individual workplace grievance. The paper concentrates on three principal areas. First it evaluates whether changes in the legislative scheme have had an impact on conciliation as the dominant mode of dispute resolution. Secondly, it examines how the way in which the tribunal exercises its dispute resolution powers to deal with individual workplace grievances over unfair dismissals has changed in two significant respects. Fair Work Australia has appointed a significant number of qualified and experienced mediators to conduct conciliation conferences, instead of these conferences is now by telephone rather than in person. The final area of dispute resolution practices that this paper deals with is ' adverse action' claims brought under the geral protections provisions of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) and the challenges that arise for Fair Work Australia in seeking to resolve such disputes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)82-102
Number of pages21
JournalMonash University Law Review
Volume38
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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