An independent MP, Dr Monique Ryan, and her chief of staff, Sally Rugg, are engaged in an employment dispute that asks when 'intense working conditions' become unreasonable.
Teal independent Dr Monique Ryan claimed victory in the seat of Kooyong in 2022, replacing former treasurer Josh Frydenberg. She hired Rugg, the former head of Change.org and campaign director with GetUp!, as well as an author and activist, as her chief of staff shortly after the election.
But by the end of 2022, Rugg had resigned, under circumstances that are now the subject of a case playing out in Federal Court.
Watch Dr Monique Ryan speak about her election win. Post continues below.
Why is Sally Rugg suing Dr Monique Ryan?
Rugg has said that while chief of staff she usually worked 70 to 80 hours a week - including working on "both days of the weekend" and performing early morning and late night duties along with her already long mandated work hours.
She wrote in her affidavit: "During sitting weeks of parliament, a standard day was at least 12 hours, and there were many days where I worked even longer than that."
Generally in politics, a chief of staff works madly behind the scenes - solving problems, being a sounding board, mediating disputes, managing logistics, handling media inquiries, briefing their superior and attending lots and lots of meetings.