Right Of Entry

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					Right of Entry Training
        May 2006
What will we cover?
•Introduction & overview
•Suspected breaches
•Holding discussions with employees
•Changes to state OHS ROE laws
•Applying for a permit
•Contraventions and enforcement
•Penalties and offences
•Summary and overview
Where do right of entry laws come from?
•Workers’ rights to organise

•Common law rights of property owners
Objects of ROE laws
A framework to balance the rights of:

Organisations to represent their members, hold discussions
      with potential members & investigate suspected


Occupiers of premises & employers to conduct their
     businesses without undue interference or harassment.
Suspected breaches
•    24 hours written notice (no more than 14 days in advance)
•    Breach in relation to Act, AWA, workplace agreement or
•    Union does NOT have to be a party to an award or
•    Suspected breach must be outlined
•    Powers to:
    – Inspect & make copies of records & documents;
    – Interview employees;
    – Inspect work, material, machinery or appliances
Suspected breaches (contd.)

•Can access an AWA member records if request is in writing

•Can not access non member records

•If records not available at time & place of entry can give 14
days written notice to produce

•Must reach agreement on where records are to be produced
Exceptions to the rule
•    Access to non member records
1.   Where the AIRC orders the access is necessary to
     investigate the suspected breach

•    Waiving of 24 hours notice of entry
1.   Where Registrar determines
2.   Only where advance notice might result in destruction,
     concealment or alteration of records
Discussions with employees
• 24 hours written notice (no more than 14 days in

• Discussions can be held with employees who are eligible
  to be members

• Union must be a party to an award or agreement

• Discussions must be held during non working time
Limitations on permit holders
An employer can make:
• A reasonable request for a permit holder to take a
  particular route to a particular room or area
• A reasonable OHS request eg, PPE, site induction etc.
• However, if there is a dispute over the test of
  reasonableness refer the matter to the AIRC
A permit holder:
• Can not access residential premises without the occupier’s
• Must show their permit when asked
State OHS Right of Entry
• A person who holds a state OHS ROE must also hold a
  federal WR permit to enter a federal WR workplace
• Must give 24 hours notice to inspect or access
  employment records
• Notice must outline reasons for inspection of
  employment records
• Must be exercised during working hours
• Must produce permit for inspection on request
• Occupier may make a reasonable request to comply with
  an OHS requirement
Fit & Proper Person test.
Has the person:
• Received appropriate training about their rights and
• Ever been convicted of an offence against a Clth, State,
  Territory or foreign law re: entry, fraud, dishonesty or
  intentional use of violence etc
• Ever been convicted of an offence under an industrial or
  OHS law or had a permit revoked, suspended or subject to
• Ever been ordered to pay a penalty for conduct under an
  industrial or OHS law

• Must not refuse or unduly delay entry

• Must not refuse or fail to allow union to inspect or make
  copies of documents

• Must not intentionally hinder or obstruct union from
  exercising rights
Contraventions (Contd.)

• Must not intentionally hinder or obstruct any person

• Must not misrepresent about powers

• General abuse of rights eg, recruitment conduct that is
  unduly disruptive
Penalties and offences
• Financial penalties
• Individual penalties of up to $6,600
• Penalties for organisations of up to $33,000
• Limitations & conditions of use, suspension or revocation of
• Compensation
• Other ie, penalty extended to other permit holders in the
Commission Orders
• Revoke or suspend some or all of the permits of the

• Impose conditions & limitations on some or all of the
  permit holders of the union

• Ban, for a specific time, the issuing of permits to the
  union, either generally or to particular persons

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