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Fresh blows to Scientology in Australia
Jonny Jacobsen
Infinite Complacency Blog
September 16, 2011


For full article and references, please click 'Source'.

Scientology in Australia, which is already fighting to retain its tax-exempt charitable status, faces new threats to its financial survival.

Australia’s Fair Work Ombudsman issued a damning report on the movement’s employment practices Friday – the same day a leading law firm announced plans for a possible class action lawsuit against the movement.
But this did not tally with the actual arrangements, the report found.


In its report, the FWO rejected Scientology’s claims that it was not subject to the country’s employment laws because of its religious status.[1]

It did not announce immediate legal action against Scientology, as media reports ahead of the release of its findings had suggested might happen.

But it made it clear it would continue to investigate and, if need be, sue the movement.

Australia law firm Slater & Gordon meanwhile announced it was considering a class action lawsuit against the movement over claims it had underpaid its workers for years.

Having conducted its own year-long investigation, it invited former members to come forward – and the key finding in the FWO report suggests that it will have a solid legal foundation on which to build.

The agency said it had “considered, but was not persuaded by” Scientology’s argument that its religious status exempted it from the Fair Work Act.

Scientology’s own documents and policies “plainly contradicted” this, it said.

The movement had characterised the small amounts paid to its workers as expenses to cover the costs such as travel and child care, rather than wages.

But this did not tally with the actual arrangements, the report found.

“In particular, witness evidence indicates that significant hours of work were imposed on workers,” it said.

“Further evidence indicates a significant level of control and direction was applied to workers by more senior church members who held positions of authority,” it added.

The movement’s own documents indicated it was a “bureaucratised organisation”, which appeared to have imported its system wholesale into Australia with little thought to the country’s laws.

Read more . . .



Disclaimer:This news page is about groups, organizations or movements, which may have been called "cults" and/or "cult-like" in some way, shape or form. But not all groups called either "cults" or "cult-like" are harmful. Instead, they may be benign and generally defined as simply people intensely devoted to a person, place or thing. Therefore, the discussion or mention of a group, organization or person on this page, is not necessarily meant pejoratively. Readers are encouraged to read widely on a topic before forming an opinion. Never accept information from a single source at face value. This website only holds a small amount of information and should not be relied on as a complete source. For example, if you find older information, this should be weighed up against newer information as circumstances can change.
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