The Australian Government last week appointed six new tribunal members to the Fair Work Commission (FWC), including five Deputy Presidents and one Commissioner, in addition to promoting Commissioner Tony Saunders to Deputy President.

Announced by Minister for Women, Jobs and Industrial Relations Kelly O’Dwyer, in addition to Mr Saunders’ elevation, Gerard Boyce, Bryce Cross, Nicholas Lake, Amanda Mansini and Janine Young have been appointed to Deputy President, and Leyla Yilmaz appointed as a Commissioner.

Further information including the backgrounds of each appointee is available via the Minister’s media statement.

The appointments come after AMMA has strongly advocated in 2018 for several new tribunal members, necessary to address ongoing performance issues at the FWC that have been of high concern to our members.

Such issues include excessive delays in enterprise agreement approvals and the growing trend for complex and often-costly adverse action claims being allocated to public servant conciliators instead of appropriately dealt with by statutorily-appointed tribunal members.

AMMA’s media statement contains analysis of the new FWC composition following the appointments, including:

  • There are now 45 members in total, one less than the 46 members when the Australian Labor Party left office on 7 September 2013. This is a more appropriate size to efficiently handle the FWC’s increasing workload.
  • There are now 24 Coalition appointees and 21 ALP appointees at the FWC. Given the President and two Vice-Presidents are ALP-appointed, the tribunal is now more evenly balanced in terms of member backgrounds.
  • 25 FWC members are at the Presidential level and 20 are at the Commissioner level.
  • 18 out of 45 FWC members are female.

Notably, half of the new appointees are women.

AMMA Chief Executive Steve Knott has congratulated Kelly O’Dwyer, who is both Minister for Jobs and Industrial Relations as well as Minister for Women, in continuing the recent appointment of high quality women to the tribunal which has significantly improved its gender balance.

Mr Knott also congratulated AMMA’s current Director Workplace Relations and Legal Counsel, Amanda Mansini, on her appointment to Deputy President of the Fair Work Commission.

“Over the past seven years, Amanda has made a significant contribution to AMMA and delivered exceptional support and guidance to our members. She will make a significant contribution to positive workplace relations outcomes in the Australian community in her new role,” Mr Knott said.

For further information, please contact [email protected] or 1800 627 771.