Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Bargaining in Good Faith

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Bargaining in Good Faith

Article excerpt

FROM July 1, 2009, parties negotiating a workplace agreement, will need to ensure they bargain in "good faith".

Good faith bargaining is about promoting open communication in the workplace. There was no requirement under WorkChoices to bargain in good faith.

However, under the Fair Work Act parties will be required to bargain in good faith and this will include: attending and participating in meetings; disclosing relevant information; giving genuine consideration to proposals and bargaining representatives and responding to them in a timely manner with reasons; and refraining from unfair or difficult conduct that undermines freedom of association or collective bargaining.

The new bargaining laws will be more onerous on the parties than the current laws.

They will also open the process up to union involvement e.g. where just one employee wishes the union to be a party to the agreement, the union can apply to Fair Work Australia (FWA) to be included as a party.

The intention is for FWA not to be heavily involved in the agreement-making process.

However, where a party refuses to bargain, FWA may make bargaining orders requiring them to bargain. …

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