Yesterday the Fair Work Commission awarded Paid Pandemic Leave to aged care workers.
The leave entitlement is for workers required to self-isolate by their employer, a medical authority or on the advice of a medical practitioner because they display COVID-19 symptoms or have come into contact with a person suspected of having COVID-19.
On a national level, HACSU and other aged care unions ran the case for workers and put a huge amount of effort into securing this paid leave,and we’re extremely happy the FWC accepted our arguments and recognised the vulnerable nature of aged care residents as well as the financial vulnerability of workers across aged care.
Without this leave, the decision to work or not can become extremely difficult, and we know most staff work fortnight to fortnight and that being forced to take unpaid leave would be financially devastating for many.
The Fair Work Commission will finalise a new clause for relevant aged care awards tomorrow.
At this stage, the decision only applies to workers employed on the award, but we're writing to each employer across the state where we have EBAs asking them to commit to the new clause.
Aged care providers and event labour hire agencies will be able to recover funding from the federal government for wages associated with any required self-isolation by workers.
Once we have further information we'll let members know.