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Freedom of Association in the Workplace - Term Paper Example

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"Freedom of Association in the Workplace" paper focuses on the freedom of association which is intended to allow employees as well as employers to freely form or belong to associations. It is intended to protect employees and independent contractors from discrimination…
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Freedom of Association in the Workplace
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Download file to see previous pages As pointed out by O’Connor J, “if the judicial power of the commonwealth is to be effectively exercised by way of conciliation and arbitration in the settlement of industrial disputes, it must be by bringing it to bear on representative bodies standing for groups of workmen….”  The observations made by O’Connor indicate that unions are necessary to redress the inherent power imbalance that exists between employer and employee and to provide effective representation for employees in the resolution of disputes.

Freedom of association under the Australian Workplace Relations Act 1996 provides the freedom to employers, employees as well as independent contractors, to join or not join industrial organizations such as trade unions for employees, or employer associations. The provisions pertaining to freedom of association are contained under Part 16 of the Workplace Relations act of 1996. Section 789 clearly specifies that a person must not organize or take any action, or threaten to take any action against another person with the intent to coerce that person or a third person “to become, or not become, an officer or member of an industrial association” or remain or cease to be an officer of the association.2 This specifically applies to employers, in that they cannot refuse to employ, dismiss or injure an employee in his/her employment, or otherwise exercise any kind of prejudice against the employee resulting in an alternation of his/her position on the grounds of membership in an association3.

Since there is greater strength in a collective approach, the workers are likely to be benefited by unions; therefore it is important to preserve their freedom of association. In today’s global age, where the urge for profits is overpowering, employers are tempted to exploit individual workers to a greater degree unless there is a representative body to watch out for their interests. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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