For over 25 years, ASU members in the community services sector fought to win portable long service leave. Last year we finally achieved a scheme that would allow community sector workers to move between sector employers and keep their accrued long service leave.
For most workers implementation of the scheme is progressing and appears to be happening reasonably smoothly, or with typical teething issues. But for some parts of our industries there are some serious issues that the Regulations created. The ASU has been pursuing certainty for impacted members. These efforts are still underway, with some areas now resolved.
Against the strong and persistent advice of the ASU, the Andrews’ government drafted and introduced Regulations for the Long Service Benefits Portability Act 2018 that are in conflict with the scoping in of CHCs in the Act itself. The impact of this has been to exclude all community service workers employed at CHCs from the PLSL statewide scheme. Unfortunately, other workers are impacted by this action also.
- Community Health Centres (CHCs) – scoped out by the Regulations – remains a problem
- Other settings deemed health or aged care – may be scoped out by the Regulations – TBC
- Non direct service roles – ambiguity raised – these workers are now being registered
The ASU has been working through 3 strategies to fix the residual areas of concerns in this mess:
- Advocacy to the Portable Long Service Authority – to see what can be fixed via interpretations and determinations..
- Seek legal advice – to explore whether anything can be remedied legally within current wording. We’ve done this.
- Legislative fix – to seek re-draft of the Act and/or Regulations. via broader advocacy to government.
We are now in a position to provide broader updates to members via workplace meetings.
Book a Workplace Meeting
If you want to book a workplace meeting with an ASU organiser to discuss this issue please get in touch with your ASU organiser or contact the ASU at firstname.lastname@example.org or the ASU contact Centre on 1300 855 570.
We have Come Too Far to Give Up Now
For all of the 25 years that the ASU fought for portable long service leave it was envisaged that community service workers at CHCs would be covered by the scheme. As the legislation passed the upper house of the Victorian parliament last year SACS workers employed at CHCs were bound by the scheme, with prominent members of government on public record stating this specifically
The ASU will continue to fight every day until you are covered. We are gearing up for a campaign against the Andrews’ government to keep them to keep their promise.
You Can Get Involved
You can get involved by;
- Organising a workplace meeting (contact the ASU in the details above)
- Volunteer to meet with your local member of parliament
In the meantime please speak with your community service colleagues and encourage them to join the ASU if they have not already. Its easy to join online today at www.asu.asn.au/asujoin