Appeal to the Fair Work Commission

The Department of Human Services has lodged an appeal to the Fair Work Commission following the decision in the case of Mr Daniel Starr.

As the matter is before the Full Bench of the Fair Work Commission it is not appropriate to comment further on the grounds for appeal at this time.

However, it should be noted the department takes it very seriously when a staff member uses derogatory and offensive language such as “spastics” and “junkies” to describe customers and will take disciplinary action in line with our policies.

The Australian Public Service (APS) Code of Conduct requires employees to behave at all times in a way that upholds the APS Values and the integrity of the APS.

The department’s staff social media policy makes it clear employees may face sanctions if online interactions are found to have breached the APS Code of Conduct.

The policy requires staff to maintain a level of professionalism consistent with their obligations as a public servant.