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Qantas Engineer Sacked For Looking At Porn Loses Unfair Dismissal

Qantas engineer sacked for looking at porn loses unfair dismissal

A Qantas engineer sacked for using his company-issued iPad to watch porn at work has lost his unfair dismissal claim.

The Fair Work Commission said the man had no excuse for looking at porn while at work.

Qantas engineer sacked for looking at porn

Gary Mellios worked for Qantas for 41-years as an aircraft engineer at Brisbane Airport until February last year.

Two female Caltex refuellers accused him of publicly viewing pornographic material on his work iPad.

The women said Mellios looked at sexually explicit material in the Engineering Hut multiple times between 2016 and 2018.

Qantas commenced an investigation and subsequently sacked Mellios.

The airline concluded he accessed pornographic sites while at work, in addition to saving explicit images to the iPad.

It also accused Mellios of exceeding monthly data limits in a single day on a number of occasions.

In his defence, Mellios told a supervisor he suffers from micro-sleeps.

He suggested he accessed the sites by accident as a result of falling asleep.

No excuse for watching porn at work

Mellios filed for unfair dismissal in the Fair Work Commission, with the case determined at a full hearing.

Despite acknowledging Mellios’ long unblemished work record, deputy president Ingrid Asbury ultimately dismissed his claim.  

“The pornographic material viewed by the Applicant was seen by two female employees on five occasions and had a significant impact on them.

“There is no excuse for the Applicant viewing pornography at work.

“It is also the case that despite the Applicant’s apologies and expressions of regret, and notwithstanding that he accepted that (the two female Caltex employees) may have seen something on the iPad screen which upset them, the Applicant’s denial that he was viewing pornography, implicitly impugns the credit of (the women).”


READ DEPUTY PRESIDENT ASBURY’S FULL DECISION HERE


Sex and work don’t mix

Industrial advocate Miles Heffernan from Dismissals ‘R’ Us says sex and work don’t mix.

“Work time is not play time, and work time is certainly not time to view pornography,” he said.

“Not only is it a misuse of time you are being paid for, it is also inappropriate, and can result in colleagues inadvertently viewing the material.

“A simple rule of thumb – if you want to look at porn, do it in your own time, and do it on your own devices – don’t use company equipment.”


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