The bushfires and emergency and disaster declarations are affecting many areas of Australia, with both workers and workplaces affected not only by the fires themselves but also by smoke haze and smoke inhalation. The Safe Work Australia website and Outdoor air pollution news article provides information about air pollution, including links to federal, state and territory resources.
Employers and employees are covered by a number of workplace rights and entitlements when affected by natural disasters. This includes leave, flexible arrangements, pay, and support for businesses.
The fair work website can provide information on:
- entitlements for different types of leave, or see the Annual leave page for information about taking annual leave and directing an employee to take leave.
- workplace health and safety including heat or smoke.
- pay during stand down or see Pay during inclement weather & stand down for more information about when an employer can stand an employee down.
- flexible working arrangements.
- assistance where small businesses affected or impacted by the bushfires.
- emergency and useful contacts, for various states.
- Paid sick and carer’s leave, Payment for sick and carer’s leave, Unpaid carer’s leave and Notice and medical certificates.
- entitlements for community service and rules and responsibilities for Community service leave.
Defence Reservists have been called to assist with the bushfires. Employers should be aware that there are a number of rights and protections that apply under the Defence Reserve Service (Protection) Act 2001. Reservists must be released from work while undertaking defence service for more information see Defence reservists – rights and responsibilities at work.
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This article has been prepared by Vanessa Baglieri, Marketing Manager. The information provided should not be relied upon as legal advice. You should speak with Rosa Raco directly about your specific circumstances via email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone +03 54996131.