Dr Monique Ryan and Sally Rugg head to mediation

Independent MP Dr Monique Ryan and her Chief of Staff Sally Rugg have reached an agreement that avoids Rugg being dismissed for her position in the immediate future.

Rugg has filed a claim against the MP and the Commonwealth over moves to dismiss her from position, and her concerns about requests to work “unreasonable” hours.

Rugg had been due to be terminated from her position on Tuesday, but she will now keep her job while remaining on “miscellaneous leave”. The parties will also enter medication to attempt to resolve a broader dispute about working conditions in the MP’s office a Melbourne court heard on Friday.

Rugg is best know for her role in the YES campaign for marriage equality. Rugg was a employed by activist organisation GetUp! She later went on to be the Director of Change.org and then worked on the campaign to call a Royal Commission into the influence of the Murdoch media empire.

When independent MP Dr Monique Ryan was elected to parliament last year, unseating Treasurer Josh Friedenberg in the seat of Kooyong, Rugg was hired to serve as Ryan’s Chief of Staff in 2022.

The court accepted a request from Rugg’s lawyers that documents relating to the claim should remain private until the mediation process lakes place.

In a statement released after the hearing on Friday, Rugg’s lawyer, Maurice Blackburn principal Josh Bornstein, said they were happy with today’s outcome.

“Ms Rugg and I are pleased with the outcome today. The issues at the core of Ms Rugg’s substantive complaints are deeply important to her.

“She notes that the 2021 Human Rights Commission’s inquiry into Commonwealth workplaces and the subsequent Set The Standard Report demonstrated that these issues are important to many staff across Commonwealth offices of the Federal Parliament.”

In a statement Dr Ryan said she hoped to reach a “sensible resolution to the dispute”.

The case will return to court on 17th February.

OIP Staff

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