Do You Need Time Away To Manage Family And Domestic Violence Issues?
Effective 1 August 2018, the Australian Fair Work Commission added five days of unpaid leave to all employees, including casual awards, to deal with family and domestic violence.
Leave will be available to an employee who is:
- experiencing family and domestic violence, and,
- needs to do something to deal with the impact of family and domestic violence (and it is impractical for them to do it outside their ordinary hours of work).
Domestic and family violence is defined as ‘violent, threatening or other abusive behaviour by an employee’s family member that seeks to coerce or control the employee, and that causes them harm or to be fearful’.
A family member is defined as:
- a spouse (or former spouse), de facto partner (or former de facto partner), child, parent, grandparent, grandchild or sibling of the employee;
- a child, parent, grandparent, grandchild or sibling of the employee’s spouse or de facto partner; or
- a person related to the employee according to Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander kinship rules.
The Fair Work Commission’s ruling only relates to employees covered by modern employment awards. This entitlement will reset every 12 months.
More information about applicable awards can be found here.
Various political parties have draft legislation before Parliament proposing to extend these entitlements and codify them in the Fair Work Act 2018.
If you require more information about these initiatives, contact MST Lawyers’ Employment Team by email or call +61 3 8540 0200.