New tools empower young workers to stand up for their workplace rights

13 November 2017

Young workers and apprentices will be better equipped to stand up for their rights in the workplace with new resources released today through a partnership between the Fair Work Ombudsman and the Foundation for Young Australians.

Six new videos available on the Fair Work Ombudsman’s YouTube channel address issues commonly experienced by young workers and provide tips for dealing with workplace concerns.

Acting Fair Work Ombudsman Kristen Hannah said young workers continued to be an area of concern for the agency.

"Young workers make up only 16 per cent of the Australian workforce however they account for a quarter of all the requests for assistance we receive. This is disproportionately high," Ms Hannah said.

"We also know that young workers can be more vulnerable as their limited workplace experience can result in a lack of awareness of their rights.

"This is why our agency is focussed on equipping young workers with the knowledge and confidence they need to better understand their entitlements and provide them with information on how to resolve workplace issues.

"We are pleased to partner with the Foundation for Young Australians on this initiative," Ms Hannah said.

The Fair Work Ombudsman and the Foundation worked together to explore current issues facing young people in the workplace.

These findings, combined with data from the Fair Work Ombudsman, informed the topics covered by the new videos, which are: 

  • Busting workplace myths
  • Warning signs for young people in the workplace
  • How to address being treated unfairly at work
  • Unpaid work
  • Tips for apprentices and trainees
  • Tips to ensure a smooth transition to a new job.

Ms Hannah encouraged young workers to use the new resources and get in touch with the Fair Work Ombudsman if they needed assistance with problems at work.

"Standing up for your rights may make you feel uncomfortable but issues can often be sorted out early with the right support and resources," Ms Hannah said.

"Often we can resolve problems quickly through early intervention before the problem gets to a point where the employment relationship has ended."

A range of specialised resources for young workers is available on the Fair Work Ombudsman website.

They include a guide to starting a new job, a guide to starting an apprenticeship and a best practice guide for young workers.

The Fair Work Ombudsman has also set out to bust commonplace myths relating to young workers.

Employers and employees can also use the Pay and Conditions Tool (PACT) for advice about pay, shift, leave and redundancy entitlements.

Employees and employers who have questions or concerns about their workplace rights and obligations can seek assistance through the My Account portal at or by calling the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94.

Follow Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James on Twitter @NatJamesFWO external-icon.png, the Fair Work Ombudsman @fairwork_gov_au External link icon or find us on Facebook External link icon.

Sign up to receive the Fair Work Ombudsman’s media releases direct to your email inbox at

Media inquiries:

Matthew Raggatt, Senior Media Adviser
Mobile: 0466 470 507


Want to save this information for later?

If you might need to read this information again, save it for later so you can access it quickly and easily.

Page reference No: 7760