Date: 19 January 2021
Court/Tribunal: Queensland Industrial Relations Commission
Judicial Officer/Tribunal Member: McLennan IC
Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) Sections: N/A
Rights Considered: N/A
Other Legislation: Acts Interpretation Act 1954 (Qld) s 14A; Directive 13/20 Appointing a public service employee to a higher classification level cl 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11; Industrial Relations Act 2016 (Qld) ss 564, 562B, 562C; Public Service Act 2008 (Qld) ss 120, 149, 149A, 149B, 149C, 194, 196, 197; Statutory Instruments Act 1992 (Qld) ss 7, 14
Keywords: Education, Training and Employment

This case concerned an appeal against a decision to not convert the appellant to a higher employment classification. The obligation imposed by the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) on public entities to consider human rights when making decisions was referenced within the relevant departmental directive, but there was no in-depth analysis of the Human Rights Act 2019.

Ms Ingram (‘the appellant’) filed an appeal against a decision to not permanently convert her from an AO7 Principal Project Officer employment level to the higher AO8 Manager classification level. She had been performing the duties of an AO8 Manager with the Department of Housing and Public Works (‘the respondent’) since 25 August 2018. The reason for the original decision was that the appellant was backfilling in the role of A08 Manager with the Social and Affordable Housing Programs, and on the substantive employee’s return, there would be no operational need for the appellant to continue in that role: at [24].

In making the decision, the Commission reproduced a clause in the Directive 13/20 Appointing a public service employee to a higher classification level which referred to the obligation on decision makers to make decisions in a way that is compatible with human rights and to give proper consideration to human rights, under the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld): at [30]. However, there was no further discussion of the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld).

The respondent’s decision was confirmed and the appeal was dismissed.

Visit the reported judgement: Ingram v State of Queensland (Department of Housing and Public Works) [2021] QIRC 011