Jen's Workplace News


In this newsletter, I discuss a trend I’ve noticed in the workplace world.

I share news about major reforms to sexual harassment laws, the end of mandatory COVID isolation, national safe work month, and Amazon’s hiring blitz.

This week’s “Dear Jen” makes for interesting reading.

And of course, I share my recommendations for your viewing and listening pleasure.

I hope this newsletter brings you some wisdom and joy!

Cheers, Jen


Jens Lens

What am I seeing out there in the workplace world? 

Whilst the media is focussing on the labour shortage, in some industries I have been seeing rising redundancies. Many businesses are reviewing their structures, considering what and who they need. Getting leaner.

A simultaneous feast and famine labour market.


Jens Articles and Cases


Amazon Hiring Blitz

Amazon has launched a hiring blitz for 2,000 staff in the lead-up to Black Friday sales. Given the difficulties Dan Murphy recently had recruiting over 2,000 staff, it will be interesting to see how Amazon fare. (For the sake of my deliveries I hope they knock it out of the park).

End Of Mandatory COVID Isolation

Mandatory isolation rules will no longer apply from 14 October 2022.

National Safe Work Month

October is National Safe Work Month. There are different ways to support this in each state.

In NSW, SafeWork NSW is encouraging businesses and employers to get involved by organising a “SafeTea” event. Gather the team, have a cuppa and start a conversation about health and safety at work.

Read more about Safe Work month here.

Pregnancy Discrimination Study

Monash University business school released a report about a pilot study regarding pregnancy discrimination in the workplace.

The report notes that case law by itself is not a helpful insight into experiences of pregnant women at work, it is only “the tip of the iceberg”.

Understanding Pregnancy Discrimination – A Pilot Study of Victorian Women’s Experiences at Work


Major Reforms To Sexual Harassment Laws Are On The Way

The new Anti-Discrimination and Human Rights Legislation Amendment (Respect at Work) Bill 2022 has recently been introduced to Federal Parliament and proposes amendments to the Sexual Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth). The Bill aims to implement recommendations from Commissioner Kate Jenkins’ Respect@Work: National Inquiry Into Sexual Harassment in the Workplace (2020).

Attorney General, Mark Dreyfus introduced the Bill, and in his Second Reading Speech declared the Bill’s focus “shifts responsibility from those who experience that discrimination and harassment to those who are best placed to prevent it: employers”.

The Bill is currently being considered by a Senate Committee which will make recommendations on proposed amendments before it is passed.

In its current form, the Bill includes amendments to the Sexual Discrimination Act which would do the following:

  • prohibit conduct in the workplace that subjects another person to an environment that is hostile on the ground of sex.
  • require employers to take reasonable and proportionate measures to eliminate sex discrimination, sexual and sex-based harassment, hostile work environments, and victimisation.
  • empower the AHRC to inquire into systemic, unlawful discrimination.

The measures employers may need to take to meet their obligations include:

  • implementing policies and procedures
  • collecting and monitoring data
  • providing appropriate support to workers and employees
  • delivering training and education on a regular basis.

Take Out Point: Employers need to follow the progress of this legislation and be ready to implement measures to meet their obligations – especially the positive duty.

Cheaper Childcare Bill

Federal Education and Youth Minister Jason Clare has introduced legislation which increases subsidies for childcare.

Family Assistance Legislation Amendment (Cheaper Child Care) Bill 2022


Jen's Mailbox

Dear Jen

I’m a podcaster, author, thought leader, climate activist, philanthropist and social justice warrior.

I left my old Firm because I wasn’t being paid properly.

I’m constantly criticised for publicly speaking my truth about my time at the Firm.

What can I do to stop this happening so that people focus on the incredible work I am doing?

Yours in world peace,

Anonymous Duchess

Dear Anonymous Duchess

I’m not sure how it works in Duchess world, but in normal employment relationships, both parties are obliged to keep what happened between them confidential. For good reasons…

Maybe it’s best to look forward, not back, and focus on your “incredible work”.




Jen's Difficult Conversations in the Workplace

Lying awake at night stressing about workplace issues?

Want peace of mind, greater confidence, reduced recruitment and legal costs?

Let’s chat about creating scripts tailored to your business, one-on-one coaching or team workshops by calling 0411 275 920. 15 minutes. No obligation.

I teach business owners and managers how to navigate the emotional and legal aspects of performance management with bespoke scripts, coaching, workshops, and courses.

Alternatively, run, don’t walk to my website for my highly informative and entertaining online course – “Difficult Conversations In The Workplace: A Lawyer’s Guide to Not Needing a Lawyer”. Spend an hour with your favourite unlawyerly lawyer for just $149 plus GST.


Jen's After Work

What The?

American Influencer Trisha Pastas has named her daughter “Malibu Barbie”. Way to limit the kid’s employment prospects Trisha!

What I Binged (on 9 Plus)

My online medical training continued with “Transplant”, a fabulous series, which confusingly, is not about organ transplants. Based in a busy Canadian ER, the show’s hero is a Syrian refugee who is ‘transplanted’ into a new life with his sister.

Speaking of fabulous medical dramas…

The final season of “New Amsterdam” has also dropped, or rather it’s “dripping” on Stan. One. Episode. Per. Week. There really should be a law about this.

What I Binged (on SBS On Demand)

Back to Canada…

Season 2 of ”Les Honorables” has droppedA family of married judges, their barrister daughter and a black sheep son and uncle fight for justice. It’s such “edge of the seat” viewing that I broke my “no subtitles after 8:30 pm on a school night” rule to rally the Dessureaux clan to the end.

What I’m Watching (on Amazon Prime)

Is there anything better than drooling over unaffordable luxury real estate? Loving season 3 of “Luxe Listings Sydney”.

What I’m Watching (on Stan – despite being cross with them)

“The Serpent Queen” is a historically inaccurate period dramedy about Catherine de’ Medici. If you like Italians who become French royals, castles and fancy clothes, this may just be for you.

What I’m Watching (on Netflix)

If you prefer Austrian royalty, with a bit more drama than LOLs, check out “The Empress”.

What I Watched In Part (on Netflix)

True crime docos are not usually about teens burgling Hollywood mansions. “The Real Bling Ring: Hollywood Heist” features interviews with those who stole over $3m in loot from Paris Hilton, Orlando Bloom, Lindsay Lohan and others. Brazen. Left me feeling icky.

What I’m Having Read to Me (on Audible)

It’s impossible not to love “Eurovision” host and “Spicks and Specks” star Myf Warhurst. Her autobiography – “Time of My Life” – is pure “trip down memory lane” joy for those of us who grew up watching “Countdown” in a house where kids weren’t allowed in “the good room”.


Jen's Last Word

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