Anti-Discrimination Board of NSW

Man’s employment terminated after application for parental leave

Conciliations: Carer’s discrimination in employment

Published: 20 July 2017

The complainant was in Australia on a two-year secondment with the Australian branch of the company he worked for in the United Kingdom. During the first year his wife became pregnant and he applied for parental leave which he would take after his wife had the child and returned to work.

After several months the company approved the leave, but within days the man was advised that his employment would be terminated, around the time that the baby was due. He would still be employed by the UK company, but he would only be able to stay in Australia for a limited time due to the terms of his visa. 

The complainant alleged that his employment was terminated because they didn’t want to grant him the leave. The employer denied this, saying it was based on performance issues. They said that had delayed dismissing him in light of his personal circumstances. He could still return to the UK and take advantage of their more generous parental leave entitlements.

The Board organised a quick conciliation conference before the man’s employment was due to end. At the conference, the employer agreed to pay him an additional five weeks’ pay and waive an amount the complainant owed the employer for relocation costs.

What does the law say about carer's responsibilities discrimination?
  • It is generally against the law in NSW to treat you unfairly or harass you because of your responsibilities as a carer.
  • The rules and requirements that you have to follow to do your work must be reasonable. They must not unreasonably disadvantage people with a carer's responsibility more than people without a carer's responsibility.
  • Your employer should also provide any special arrangements you need to do your job at the same time as managing your carer's responsibilities, unless this is not reasonable in all the circumstances. 

More information on Carer's responsibilities discrimination

​​​Back to July 2017 - Equal Time Newsletter​​​​​​

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