Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Sick Days Lead to Sacking

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Sick Days Lead to Sacking

Article excerpt

Pamela Frost

APN Newsdesk

news@dailymercury.com.au

A MINE worker is locked in a legal battle against mining company Anglo Coal because the worker was sacked after taking two sick days.

Stephen Byrne, who worked at Dawson Mine at Moura, originally asked to take two days off in April last year as annual leave because he started feeling unwell in the lead-up to two night shifts. When this was refused, he took them as sick days instead.

Mr Byrne, who is also the mine's union president, saw a doctor and obtained a medical certificate.

When he returned to work after two days off sick, he was sacked.

Mr Byrne took this to court with the support of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU).

A Federal Court judge found earlier this year that Anglo Coal did not breach the law, and Mr Byrne and the union are appealing this decision.

Evidence before the Federal Court said Mr Byrne had worked at the mine since August 2011 as a multi-skilled operator. …

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