Seven Settles Over Sunrise Newsreader’s False Dismissal

Seven Settles Over Sunrise Newsreader’s False Dismissal

Weekend Sunrise newsreader Talitha Cummins has reached a confidential settlement with Seven this morning after claiming she was sacked unfairly while on maternity leave.

B&T Magazine
Posted by B&T Magazine

The case was heard this morning in the Federal Circuit Court and Cummins was represented by her lawyers.

Fairfax Media has reported that Cummins’ lawyer Sam Lavery has said a confidential settlement with Seven had been reached, adding that Cummins would not be given her job back at the network.

A Seven spokesperson told B&T: “We are pleased this has been amicably resolved and wish Talitha all the best.”

Cummins claimed the network terminated her employment nine weeks into her maternity leave. Cummins went public with a previous battle with alcoholism last October.

The Weekend Sunrise reporter lodged a claim in the Federal Circuit Court after apparent mediation with the network broke down.

Apparently, Cummins’ Weekend Sunrise role was only casual and when the contract ran out the network reportedly offered her another role that required the newsreader to start at 2am for much longer hours and no extra pay – a role Cummins refused.

This is the third high-profile incident the network has had since the Harrison scandal broke in December.

In February, it settled with a junior reporter from Adelaide, Amy Taeuber, who claimed she was bullied, called a lesbian by a senior staffer and then terminated. Taeuber reportedly wanted as much as $300,000, however, the case was settled out of court and her payment never made public.

Cummins told Fairfax Media:  “I never wanted any bad blood with my former employer, and I have tried to settle this matter in a manner that recognises my rights under the law. Unfortunately, we have not been able to reach anything like a reasonable settlement.

“The issue at stake is an important one, not only for me but for many women, as I’ve observed in practice. Many aren’t in a position to defend their workplace rights. I’m in the fortunate position where I can.