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Mediation report should ring alarm bells

Media release 9 April 2001

Mediation report should ring alarm bells - Knowles

It is not legitimate for restrictive work practices to be imposed on an innocent party as the result of mediation, says Employers' Federation chief executive Anne Knowles.

Ms Knowles says the mediator's report on Mainland Stevedoring and the Waterfront Workers' Union goes beyond its brief in calling for a compromise that penalises the innocent party.

"Given that the mediator has dismissed the four allegations made by the Waterfront Workers' Union, there was no need to propose a "compromise" between that union and the employer concerned.

"There has been no breach of contract, no breach of agreement and no breach of law by the company concerned. So there is no need to penalise that employer with restrictive work practices.

"In fact it is quite alarming that the mediator's report should suggest such a proposal. If accepted, it would set a dangerous precedent - that any outside party can 'muscle in' on an employment relationship that they are not a party to, and by causing enough fuss, can activate mediation and bring about restrictions on how a legitimate, law-abiding company goes about its business."

ENDS

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