Can an Employee be Forced to Purchase Registration

Can you force an employee to buy Fitness Australia (or other) registration?

According to the Fair Work Ombudsman, this is a clear 'no'. 

Employees should not need to spend money in order to secure or keep employment. 

This applies to any of the employee’s or prospective employee’s money, not just the pay they get for working.

This means that an employer can’t:

  • ask a prospective employee to pay money just to receive a job offer
  • ask employees to pay money to keep their job
  • pay the employee the correct pay rate and then make them give some of it back. Learn more here.

If this occurs, employees should contact the Fair Work Ombudsman: 131 394

Fitness Australia's recent efforts to insist business members only employ Fitness Australia registered professionals is not just unlawful, it discourages best practice among employers and shows zero respect for the rights of working professionals. 

The Fair Work Act also provides employees and prospective employees with general protections

The general protections have been introduced to:

  • protect workplace rights
  • protect freedom of association
  • provide protection from workplace discrimination, and
  • provide effective relief for persons who have been discriminated against, victimised, or have experienced other unfair treatment.

A person (such as an employer), must not take any 'adverse action' against another person (such as an employee), because that person has a workplace right, has exercised a workplace right or proposes to exercise that workplace right.

What are "adverse actions" that can be taken against an employee or potential employee? 

  • dismissing them
  • not giving them their legal entitlements
  • changing their job to their disadvantage
  • treating them differently than others
  • not hiring them
  • offering them different (and unfair) terms and conditions, compared to other employees.

We should be pushing for an industry that provides the example of best practice to all others

If we hope to have an enduring impact on government, allied health, and the general public, conducting ourselves professionally and ethically is of the highest importance. 

We need to show that we;

Respect both the letter and the tenet of the law and...

Respect the rights of professionals who are integral to both our industry and each of the businesses in which they work.

Forced registration is not the answer. 

FITREC is focused on building a registration service that provides genuine utility for fitness professionals and employers.

If an employee believes their general protections at work have been breached, they should contact the Fair Work Ombudsman: 131 394, or lodge a claim to the Fair Work Commission: 1300 799 675.