Textile workers’ claim

Posted on June 7, 2013. Filed under: Uncategorized |

The Geelong Advertiser published the following article this morning relating to the former TFT Division based in Belmont, Victoria.


Mandy Squires   |  June 7th, 2013

UP to five employees of the former Belmont textiles division of CSIRO are considering taking legal action over bullying and harassment claims, which include a stabbing threat, the abuse of special needs employees and sexual harassment, it is alleged.

A spokesman for the Victims of CSIRO group, Andrew Hooley, yesterday said the former employees had sought his advice on how best to proceed with their claims as they did not have faith in the “CSIRO-sponsored” investigation into bullying and harassment within the organisation.

“The nature of complaints relate to adverse actions and decisions which were taken which were prejudicial to those people. In a couple of cases people have actually been physically threatened with harm and harassed,” Mr Hooley said.

“It’s certainly the case with the claims originating from Belmont that they (the complainants) are quite loath to actually participate in the inquiry so they have been looking at other avenues, whether it be a compensation claim or whether it be a common law action … what we’ve been investigating is the prosecution of claims individually, potentially through a single law firm.”

The Victims of CSIRO had received more than 100 complaints nationally, with several from Geelong, he said.

The Geelong claims relate to the Textile and Fibre Technology division of the CSIRO – located in Belmont until early this year – and not the Australian Animal Health Laboratory in East Geelong.

Mr Hooley said the alleged incidents, most of which took place in 2008 and 2009, included:

A THREATENED stabbing;

SHARP metal objects being thrown around in a workshop causing injury;

THEFT of intellectual property and falsifying patent applications;

ABUSE of special needs employees;

SAFETY concerns being ignored leading to a serious injury being sustained after an employee got his hand caught in a textiles machine;

NEPOTISM in appointment of new staff;

INTERFERENCE with academic studies;

FAILURE of human resources employees to respond to bullying allegations, stating that it was “not CSIRO’s responsibility to get involved”;

and SEXUAL harassment of a female employee.

CSIRO media spokesman Huw Morgan said the organisation would not comment on the claims or the investigation.

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3 Responses to “Textile workers’ claim”

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have people gone nuts in CSIRO?

The smart thing to do is to got out of this place as quickly as possible. It clear that this is not a place for SANE people to work.

I will narrate a bullying complaint and the way the manager dealt with it. its interesting.

After all the denials and evasive responses & manoeuvres the manager started what the manager believed is scaring me. Manager constantly at least 3-4 times asked me about future sick leaves for which is said that i will inform if i am sick as per normal procedure which I have always done. One of the managers lieutenants (they always operate in pairs) seconded that and again asked about my future sick leave for at least 5-6 times. I said again that if I do take sick leave I will inform as per procedure. The lieutenant kept repeating the SICK leave for at least 5-6 times believing that I would be psychologically scared.

Realizing that the Psychological scare tactics did not work, the manger changed course immediately and constantly at least 5-6 time mentioned “if you meet with an ACCIDENT we need to know”.
Initially for second or two i got a bit confused as to the intent and asked the manager why would I meet with an ACCIDENT and what makes you believe i will. They realized it didn’t work.

What the Manager and lieutenant didn’t realize is that, here Accidents are a rear occurrence but from the place I come from road accidents are common and happens every day ever hour and we are pretty much used to it.

So obviously that didn’t scare me, and of course a failure on the managers duty to harass, and made me think what is really wrong and where! Have people gone nuts or is it the way they operate?

There is every chance a inexperienced person may have got sacred by listening to such thing.

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