An Australian Federal Government employee is suing for compensation after being injured while having sex on a work trip.
The woman, who cannot be named, was injured when a glass light fitting came away from the wall above a bed in 2007. The Federal Court in Sydney has heard she suffered facial injuries after the light hit her.
It heard she was staying in a country town to go to a work meeting the next day. Leo Grey, representing the woman, told the court there was no suggestion she had engaged in any misconduct. Mr Grey said her injury occurred during “an ordinary incident of life commonly undertaken in a motel room at night“.
She applied for compensation from Comcare, the Federal Government workplace safety body, but it found the sexual activity was not an ordinary incident of an overnight stay like showering, sleeping or eating.
Mr Grey said she had been injured while engaging in “lawful sexual activity, noting there had not been any rule that employees should not have anyone else in their room without express permission of their department”. “This is not the 1920s, after all,” he said.
Andrew Berger, for Comcare, said people needed to eat, sleep and attend to their personal hygiene but “you don’t need to have sex”.
The appeal is continuing.