Job Application Forms
Job application forms are sometimes used by employers and recruitment agencies to select workers. Job application forms should only ask questions directly related to the skills and qualifications needed to do the job. Questions about personal characteristics could be considered discriminatory if they are not relevant to the job.
Job application forms might ask about past WorkCover claims, injuries or health. This information can only be asked when the injury may affect a person’s ability to do the job, especially if it could place others at risk. It is a good idea to state why this information is needed. Applicants should reveal any conditions that would affect their ability to do the job.
As an Applicant:
You should reveal any conditions that would affect your ability to do the job. If you have had health issues or work injuries that won’t affect the job, make a clear, accurate statement such as: "My health condition does not prevent me from carrying out the duties listed" or "I will provide further details at an interview".
If the form doesn't say why the employer needs the information, you could leave that part blank. If the employer later asks why you did this, you could say it wasn't clear why the information was needed, and you wanted to talk to them about it directly. If you think you have been discriminated against as a result of filling in a job application form, contact us for advice.
As an Employer:
If you are going to ask about disability, injury or health it should be only in relation to a person’s ability to do a job. If an applicant reveals that they have an injury or a disability, you should not assume they can't do the job. This could be disability discrimination.
In an interview you could ask these questions:
- Could your injury or disability impact on your ability to do the job?
- Would you need additional assistance or equipment?
- Can you perform the work required without endangering people?
- Can you respond adequately to any likely emergency at work?
Employers asking applicants for photographs could be a request for discriminatory information. Photographs showing a person's race, age and sex could lead employers to employ someone for reasons other than their ability to do the job.
There are exceptions, such as employers seeking models or actors with a particular look. It is the employers responsibility to show that requests for photographs are reasonable and will not lead to discrimination.