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ACTU calls for two weeks paid special leave for all workers

The ACTU Executive today has called on the Morrison government to provide a guarantee of two weeks paid leave for all workers, permanent, casual and contract, who are forced to either self-isolate as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic or where there is a genuine business downturn or shutdown as a result of the pandemic.

The resolution followed a debate about the wide-ranging impacts on workers employed under all forms of mechanisms. While 1 in 3 workers have no access to paid leave the ACTU Executive heard of the wide range of responses from employers which varies from paid support for workers needing to self-isolate to removing shifts from casual workers and sending employees home without pay.

Sally McManus has said that The most important thing for public health is to ensure everyone knows that if they have to self -isolate that there is not going to be a financial penalty for them and their family.

“If working people are forced to choose between going to work sick or being able to pay their bills and feed their families then we are creating a disaster scenario for public health.” Said Ms McManus

The Australian union movement has reached out to business with the resolution calling on the Morrison government to provide support “for employers, especially small business, in our collective efforts to respond” to COVID-19 which the ACTU has identified as needing a public health response of “the highest priority”

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