Coronavirus and Australian Workplace Laws

PDF Version – Summary below

Coronavirus and Australian Workplace Laws Summary

The document provides information about Australian workplace laws in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. It outlines the rights and obligations of both employers and employees during this period.

Key points include:

1. Health and Safety Information: Employees and employers can access up-to-date health and safety guidelines from the Australian Government Department of Health, Safe Work Australia, and state or territory health units.

2. Workplace Adjustments: Employers can direct employees to stay away from the workplace if necessary for health and safety reasons. Employees affected by COVID-19 can take paid sick or carer’s leave, and arrangements like working from home can be made where practical.

3. Leave and Pay: Employees who are sick with COVID-19 or need to care for a family member can use their paid leave entitlements. If no paid leave is available, unpaid leave can be taken. Employers must continue to pay employees who are ready and willing to work but are directed not to come to the workplace due to health advice.

4. Travel and Quarantine: Employees stuck overseas or required to quarantine must inform their employer and may need to negotiate leave or remote work arrangements. Employers can direct employees not to undertake work-related travel.

5. Employment Changes: In cases where employees cannot perform their work due to COVID-19, options like leave, working from home, or in some cases, termination of employment may be considered, following legal and contractual obligations.

The document encourages cooperation between employers and employees to navigate the challenges posed by the pandemic, ensuring safety and compliance with legal obligations.