Although industrial agreements are generally to be construed with a degree of latitude or generosity, a court is not free to read into them preconceived notions of fairness. Nor, said Flick J (at [37-38]), are awards to be read ‘in a vacuum divorced from industrial realities’15. Context is important.
The issue was whether a worker was entitled to convert from casual to full-time employment on a ‘like-for-like’ basis under the enterprise agreement. The employer having breached the agreement in this regard was liable to pay compensation. iTip – this case illustrates the function and limits of context when dealing with industrial instruments.
This case is from Episode 30 of interpretationNOW!
15 City of Wanneroo  FCA 813 (at ), quoted.