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Pre-employment medical tests under examination

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In a decision handed down on 4 September 2008, the Equal Opportunity Tribunal found that failing a back fitness test should not have disqualified a bus driver from getting a job.  Rion Tarr had been working as a bus driver for 12 months when the bus company was sold and he had to apply for the same job with the new employer.  Rion was given pre-employment tests and was told he could not do the job because he failed the back fitness test.  The Tribunal found that a back fitness test did not show whether Mr Tarr could do the job.

The Tribunal accepted Mr Tarr could do the job, and had gone on to be a truck driver.  The Commissioner said "If a person can do the work, employers should not use pre-employment medicals as a reason not to give them the job.  Medical testing before employment needs to be specifically related to the work the person has to do." 

Mr Tarr was awarded $3,834 compensation.

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