Calls for a civil claim of action for ‘workplace bullying’

People often call my office for help with workplace bullying.

Workplace bullying has a high profile as an issue of concern for employees and employers. Given that, it can come as a surprise that there is no straightforward way to sue for workplace bullying.

Complainants can consider whether their circumstances might give rise to a claim for any psychological injury arising from the bullying, or a sexual harassment or discrimination claim, a ‘general protections’ claim under the Fair Work Act, or a complaint (generally not giving rise to any remedy for the complainant) to government health and safety inspectors.  Those are not necessarily the only possibilities, but each is a specific type of claim that arises only in limited circumstances.

My colleague Josh Bornstein has called for law reform, to make our laws more responsive to workplace bullying, in The Drum. I recommend the piece to anyone interested in workplace bullying.