Twu Fined Over Unlawful Industrial Action

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4th November 2010, 01:00pm - Views: 3436

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Fair Work Infoline: 13 13 94 

Media Release

  4 Nov 2010

TWU fined over unlawful industrial action

The Transport Workers Union of Australia (TWU) and one of its organisers have

been fined more than $11,000 for organising unlawful industrial action at a

national transport company in Sydney last year.

The TWU has been penalised $9900 and organiser Neale Harper a further $1320

in the Federal Magistrates Court following a prosecution by the Fair Work


Federal Magistrate Shenagh Barnes imposed the fines after Harper admitted he

was involved in the TWU breaching workplace law by organising employees of

McColl’s Transport to engage in unlawful industrial action at the company’s

Wetherill Park depot in western Sydney on February 16, 2009.

Federal Magistrate Barnes said the fines reflected the need to deter future

breaches by the TWU, Harper and others.

The industrial action was conducted in objection to McColl’s Transport dismissing

an employee, who was a TWU workplace representative, on February 13.

Harper was an organiser for the TWU at the Wetherill Park depot at the time. 

The industrial action was unlawful because it occurred prior to the expiry of the

McColl’s Transport employees’ enterprise bargaining agreement.

Federal Magistrate Barnes also fined Barnes a further $100 for breaching

workplace laws by failing to return his Permit to Enter and Inspect Premises

within seven days of it expiring in 2008. 

Fair Work Ombudsman Executive Director Michael Campbell says failing to comply

with laws regarding how industrial action can be lawfully conducted is a serious


In an unrelated case, the TWU was earlier this year fined $35,000 for organising

unlawful industrial action by Qantas baggage handlers at the Adelaide and

Melbourne airports in December, 2007.

The fine, imposed in the Federal Court in Adelaide, was also the result of a

prosecution by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

Employers or employees seeking assistance should contact the Fair Work Infoline

on 13 13 94 or visit For translations call 13 14 50.

Media inquiries:


Ryan Pedler, Senior Adviser Media & Stakeholder Relations. (03) 9954

2561, 0411 430 902.

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