Employers may exert the proper authority they want upon their employees, especially when workplace civility is in need. However, Australia’s Fair Work Act 2009 serves as a caveat, for it defined the statutory meaning of ‘bullying’.
Jurisprudence by the Australian Fair Work Commission had set the guidelines in classifying the ‘unreasonable behavior’ into less obvious examples. Accordingly, such decision set a landmark rule which settles all the loopholes perpetrated by violators of the Fair Work Act 2009.
According to previous rulings the FWC have laid down the behaviors found to be unreasonable. It includes delaying administrative work, rude and hostile manner of communication, making a client out of an employee by including them to the debt collecting services, listening to employees’ conversations and asking about its content, non-acknowledgement, failure to inform, and even mere ‘unfriending’ in social media, or any showing of lack of civility at work.
Sec. 78 FD of the Fair Work Act, as defined in Work Health and Safety Act 2011, the criteria which define workplace bullying are: repeated unreasonable behavior, such behavior puts a risk to health and safety, and the work must be in a constitutionally covered workplace.
The term ‘repeated’ may be construed to refer to a range of behavior over time which includes sarcasm, bad faith, isolating, freezing out, belittling, and innuendo. Meanwhile, ‘risk to health and safety’ construes as suffering physically or from depression, anxiety, or if the offended was required a medical or psychological treatment.
Nevertheless, one can eliminate bullying through workplace bully trainings, civility consulting, worker feedbacks, and incident reports.
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