An unfair dismissal trial instigated by two former staffers of Senator Jacqui Lambie has heard about workplace concerns on her alleged use of profanity and alcohol consumption.
Rob and Fern Messenger were sacked by Senator Lambie in 2017 and have claimed before the Federal Court that this adverse action was the result of complaints they made to her and to then-prime minister Malcolm Turnbull about her conduct.
Mr Messenger at Monday's hearing said staff members were impacted by profanity and sexualised language on a daily basis. "I'm not saying I didn't utter the odd profanity," he said.
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"However, when it came to Senator Lambie's swearing, she took it to a whole new level."
Mr Messenger said the pair approached her in July 2016 about complaints from staff and suggested certain words should not be used in the workplace.
"It was a very tense meeting, I recall, but it was a very necessary meeting," he said.
Mr Messenger said they also complained about excessive work hours, including an expectation to work during their time off, and Ms Lambie's alcohol use.
The pair attended Monday's hearing without legal representation and at numerous times were directed by Justice John Snaden to stick to their statement of claim regarding the complaints.
Senator Lambie's lawyer Nick Harrington raised numerous objections about the validity of Mr Messenger's testimony.
He said there was a lack of precision to Mr Messenger's evidence, particularly with regard to dates of certain complaints, which made it difficult for his client to respond to.
Mr Harrington said the trial was not an opportunity to explore conduct or character of Senator Lambie in the workplace outside the complaints that were made.
Justice Snaden instructed the Messengers that without adequate detail in their evidence it was difficult for the court make a clear finding.
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