Qantas found guilty of unlawfully standing down COVID-concerned worker Theo Seremetidis


Qantas has been found guilty of illegally firing longstanding employee Theo Seremetidis over his health and safety concerns at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The court case is the first of its kind in Australia.

The court heard Mr Seremetidis, who was an aircraft cleaner and trained health and safety representative at Qantas since 2014, was told not to come to work from February 7, 2020 after he directed some workers to “cease unsafe work.”

File image of Qantas planes. Photo: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images.

Mr Seremetidis had raised concerns about cleaning staff not having adequate personal protective equipment, even masks, to use while working on planes that had arrived from China in early 2020.

According to, Judge David Russell found today that the airline had acted illegally by standing Mr Seremetidis down him from his role.

The airline will be sentenced in the NSW District Court at a later date.




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