Date: 27 November 2020
Tribunal: Queensland Industrial Relations Commission
Tribunal Member: Pidgeon IC
Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) Sections: NA
Rights Considered: N/A
Other Legislation: Public Service Act 2008 (Qld) ss 148, 149, 194; Industrial Relations Act 2016 (Qld) s 562; Directive 09/20 Fixed term temporary employment
Keywords: Education, Training and Employment

The appellant sought to challenge the outcome of a review of her employment status. Contained within the relevant policy directive was a provision acknowledging the requirement of public entities to make decisions that are compatible with human rights. There was no in-depth analysis of the provision in the directive or the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) generally. 

This case concerned an application to review the respondent’s decision to refrain from converting Ms Schimke’s employment from fixed-term temporary status to permanent status, as a substantial incumbent was returning to the role on a full-time basis. Ms Schimke appealed this decision on the grounds that it did not align with the relevant policy directive, Directive 09/20 Fixed term temporary employment (‘the Directive’), which clarified the process of converting fixed-term temporary employment to permanent employment: at [3].

The Directive noted that decision-makers were obliged, under the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld), to act and make decisions in a way that was compatible with human rights and to give proper consideration to human rights: at [6]. The Commission reproduced this clause in the reasons for decision, but there was no further discussion of the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld).

The Commission considered that the decision not to convert Ms Schimke’s position was fair and reasonable in the context of the considerations provided by the Public Service Act 2008 (Qld): at [15]-[16].

The Commission upheld the respondent’s decision and dismissed the appeal.

Visit the reported judgement: Schimke v State of Queensland (Queensland Fire and Emergency Services) [2020] QIRC 205 (PDF, 249.6 KB)