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Anti-Discrimination (work related) matters

The Queensland Industrial Relations Commission (QIRC) hears work related complaints of alleged unlawful discrimination after they have been investigated and referred to the QIRC by the Anti-Discrimination Commission Queensland (ADCQ). The referral report contains the documents provided by the parties in the original complaint and any additional notes made by the ADCQ.

What is a work-related matter?

A work-related matter includes complaints that allege discrimination, sexual harassment, or other contraventions of the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 that happened at work. This includes:


The QIRC is also responsible for granting an exemption to allow a person or business to do something that is otherwise unlawful under the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991, for example advertising for female employees only.

Exemptions can also be granted from the operation of a specified provision of the Anti-discrimination Act 1991. An exemption can be granted for a temporary period of up to five years and can be renewed for further periods of up to five years.

Click here to view information on Applying for Exemptions.

To apply for an exemption or renew an existing exemption under the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 use the following form;

Form 83 – Application for exemption or renewal of exemption from the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991

Applications Process – Anti-Discrimination (work related) matters

If you feel you have been discriminated against at work, you should make an application to the Anti-Discrimination Commission of Queensland (ADCQ). If the matter is not able to be settled at the ADCQ, then it may be referred to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission (QIRC) for determination.

Application for an order protecting complainant’s interest:

At any time before a complaint is referred to the QIRC, you may apply to the QIRC for an order prohibiting a person from doing an act that might prejudice: 

You will need to complete:

Form 84 - Application for an order protecting complainant’s interests

Application for review of Anti-Discrimination Commission (ADC) decision about complaint lapsing:

An application may be made under section 169(3) of the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 to review an ADC decision.  This must be made within 28 days of being notified that the Commissioner has lapsed the matter. 

To make an application in relation to a complaint lapsing, lodge Form 86 - Application for review of ADC decision about complaint lapsing. A copy of the decision being reviewed must be provided with the application.

Referral of complaint not resolved

If a conciliation conference has been held and the complaint has not been resolved, the complainant may give the Anti-Discrimination Commissioner a written notice requiring the commissioner to refer the complaint to the QIRC. 

See Anti Discrimination Commissioner website for further information.

Referral of complaint after 6 months

If the commissioner has not finished dealing with a complaint 6 months after informing the complainant and the respondent that the complaint has been accepted, either the complainant or the respondent may, by written notice request the commissioner to refer the complaint to the tribunal.

See Anti Discrimination Commissioner website for further information.

Application to stay a decision

Use this form to make an application to ‘stay’ an administrative decision. This means that a decision is postponed and will not take effect until the QIRC has heard the application to review the decision.

Form 2 - Application to Queensland Industrial Relations Commission

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