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  • The Australian Human Rights Commission has published new positive duty guidance material.
  • A new positive duty framework for action will assist Australian employers and businesses foster safe, respectful, diverse and inclusive workplaces.
  • From 12 December 2023, the Australian Human Rights Commission will have powers to monitor and enforce the positive duty.

The Australian Human Rights Commission (‘AHRC’) has released guidance material to assist organisations and businesses of all sizes meet their positive duty obligations under s 47C of the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth) (‘Sex Discrimination Act’).

The positive duty provides that an employer or person conducting a business or undertaking (‘PCBU’) must take reasonable and proportionate measures to eliminate as far as possible sex discrimination, sexual harassment, sex-based harassment, hostile workplace environments and victimisation (relevant unlawful conduct). The positive duty will shift the burden away from individuals making complaints and places the onus on employers to prioritise early intervention and prevention.

The focus of this article is on the AHRC’s new positive duty framework and its implementation in practice.

Guidance material

Last month the AHRC released a highly anticipated suite of guidance materials to assist businesses and organisations understand their responsibilities and the changes they may need to make to meet new legal obligations.

Four publications have been developed to assist businesses of all sizes and resources.

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