Industrial Relations Act 1979

  • Date: April 27, 2011
  • Source: Admin
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 The Industrial Relations Act 1979 seeks to consolidate and amend the law relating to the prevention and resolution of conflict in respect of industrial matters, the mutual rights and duties of employers and employees, the rights and duties of organizations of employers and employees, and for related purposes.  It is comprised of seven parts. The important parts of the legislation and what they cover are explained in the following Table:


This part in turn is comprised of Divisions 1, 2, 2A, 2B, 2C, 2D, 2E, 2F, 2G, 3, 3A, 3B, 4 and 5. The matters dealt with by some of these Divisions are as follows:
Division 1 lays down the constitution of the Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission.
Division 2 defines the general jurisdiction and powers of the Commission.
Division 2A deals with Awards
Division 2B deals with industrial agreements
Division 2C explains how the Commission can summon any person to attend, at a conference, before the Commission. 
 Division 2E deals with appeals to full bench from decision of Commission under the Act  
Division 2F prescribes the employment records to be kept. It lays down that access to the said records should be provided.
 Division 2G confers right of entry and inspection on authorized representatives.
Division 3A and its Subdivisions deal with MCE Act (Minimum Conditions of Employment Act, 1993) functions.
 Division 3B deals with collective agreements and good faith bargaining
 Division 4 deals with industrial organizations and association -- provisions cover registration of organizations of employees and employers; audit and filing of accounts of the said organizations, conduct of elections, etc.
This part defines constituent authorities
This part deals with the enforcement of the Act, awards, industrial agreements and orders
This part provides for the constitution of Western Australian Industrial Appeal Court, its jurisdiction, enforcement of judgments and its power in respect of contempt, amongst other things. 
This part deals with freedom of association. It deals with the issue of discrimination arising from membership of an organization. It says, amongst other things, that a person must not, in relation to any contract of employment or contract for services, treat another person less favorably or more favorably according to whether or not the person is, or will become or cease to be, a member or officer of an organization.  Penalties applicable to such discriminatory acts and the role of the Industrial Magistrate’s Court are also laid down in this part.
This part deals with employer-employee agreements. Provisions cover the making of the EEA, the form and content of EEA and registration of EEA, amongst other things. Notably, it provides for appeal against refusal of registration and remedy against delay alleged in dispute resolution.
EEAs for persons with mental disabilities are separately dealt with under Division 9 

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