Sue Barnes Presenting on Employer’s Liability for Mental Health of Employees

Sue Barnes is a Partner with FCB Workplace Law and will be presenting on employer liability of employee’s mental health at the 16th International Mental Health Conference will be held at the QT Hotel, Surfers Paradise from Thursday 13 August to Friday 14 August 2015.

Sue Barnes

Sue Barnes

Sue has over 25 years’ experience as a lawyer, the majority of those in workplace relations. She has acted for employers across numerous of industries including banking and finance, insurance, communications, IT and retail.

Sue is highly experienced in drafting employment contracts and policies, and acting in relation to post-employment restraints, harassment and discrimination matters—including the conduct of investigations and defence of litigation, and unfair dismissals.

Sue takes a pragmatic, solution focused-approach, based on a deep understanding of her clients’ businesses.

Abstract Title: Looking through a different prism: An Employer’s Liability for mental health of employees

Abstract: Employers are coming under increasing scrutiny for the mental health of their workforce.

An employer who fails to take sufficient care for the mental health of a worker can face up to 8 different forms of legal claims. Additionally, senior employees can themselves be held liable and potentially face  hefty fines and at worst, imprisonment.

In many pink collar environments stress is the highest risk factor for employees.

This presentation will cover the following topics.

  1. Trends in worker claims for psychological injury and the impact on productivity in the workplace
  2. An overview of several  workplace laws that impose  obligations on employers to care for employee mental health including anti-bullying orders, workers compensation,  general  protections, unfair dismissal and negligence.
  3. An in depth review of mental health as a Work Health and Safety issue including lessons learnt from  existing case law, and  the Australian Workplace Barometer Report on Psychosocial Safety Climate and Worker Health in Australia published by Safe Work Australia; and appropriate risk assessment of psychosocial hazards.
  4. Practical tips from a workplace law perspective to protect both employers and employees.

For more information on the 16th International Mental Health Conference please visit the website here.

To read more about FCB Group’s services, please visit their website here.



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