A-G issues warning on bullying

Canberra workers who recklessly fail to prevent behaviour which causes serious harm to another can be fined $220,000 and jailed for seven years under the Work Safety Act.

The Canberra Times
February 19, 2010

A-G issues warning on bullying
Markus Mannheim

As Canberra Hospital fended off claims yesterday it had failed to deal with bullying in its maternity ward, ACT Attorney-General Simon Corbell offered advice on how to avoid workplace harassment.

Mr Corbell launched guides for both employers and potential victims of bullying, saying the problem existed ''beyond the schoolyard'' and pervaded most sections of society.

He said workplace harassment led to absenteeism and poor morale, and could dramatically affect productivity.

ACT Work Safety Commissioner Mark McCabe said bullying also undermined safety, and warned Canberra workers they could be penalised harshly for dangerous harassment.

Four Victorian cafe workers who bullied a teenage waitress were convicted earlier this month and fined a total of $115,000 in the Melbourne Magistrate's Court.

The 19-year-old victim, Brodie Panlock, killed herself in 2006 after being subjected to what a magistrate described as ''persistent and vicious'' harassment.

Mr McCabe referred to Ms Panlock's death yesterday, saying what happened in Victoria could happen in the ACT.

Canberra workers who recklessly fail to prevent behaviour which causes serious harm to another can be fined $220,000 and jailed for seven years under the Work Safety Act.

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/news/local/news/general/ag-issues-warning-on-bullying/1755497.aspx


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