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Closing Loopholes Act - Change to DV Protections

adverse action australian capital territory changes closingloopholes family and domestic violence new south wales northern territory protected attributes south australia tasmania victoria western australia Feb 26, 2024

Change 1: Protection for employees subject to family and domestic violence

Previously, ‘subjection to family and domestic violence’ was not listed as a protected attribute for employees, meaning employees were not safeguarded from adverse action.

This all changed after the recent amendments to the Closing Loopholes Act 2023, which now states it is unlawful for an employer to take adverse action against a current or potential employee who has been subjected to family and domestic violence.

 Let’s break this down…

What does adverse action look like?

  • Dismissal
  • Changing an employee’s job to their disadvantage
  • Being treated differently to other employees
  • Not hiring someone

Essentially a 'negative' action or decision, not in the employee's favour.

What is a protected attribute?

Under the Fair Work Act, employees and prospective employees are protected by attributes such as: age, race, colour, sex, physical or mental disability, marital status, religion, political opinion, gender identify and so on.

 What does this amendment change?

  • Experiencing family and domestic violence is now considered a ‘protected attribute’ and added to the list above.
  • Enterprise agreements and modern awards cannot include terms that discriminate against a person subjected to family and domestic violence.
  • The changes complement the Governments introduction of 10 days paid family and domestic violence leave.
  • Employees are better protected within the workplace against adverse action.


If you have any questions regarding the changes above, please feel free to reach out via [email protected]  or give us a call on 0401 510 559.



Author: Jess Roughsedge (HR Officer)