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Mar 28, 2020COVID19 PN Updates

At our discussion at the PNI Consultation meeting earlier this week, the RTBU requested confirmation about the current pay arrangements PN has in place in response to the various circumstances arising as a result of COVID-19.

During these unprecedented times, people need clear information and clarity – whether its health advice or information about your rights at work.

PN has subsequently provided the following clarification. Please note that the definition of Close Contact PN is using aligns to that put out by the Federal Department of Health. That is, Close Contact is defined as spending at least 15 minutes in face to face contact, or at least 2 hours in an enclosed space with a person diagnosed with COVID-19.

1.Where an employee has been in close contact with another person who has been confirmed as infected with COVID-19, they are required to self isolate for 14 days (in accordance with Government prescriptions). During this period, they will receive paid special leave (which is at the base rate of pay).

2. Where an employee has been in close contact with another person who might be infected with COVID-19 (ie secondary close contact), they are asked to take extra precautions to minimise contact with others until the test results for the suspected person are received. During this period, they should work discuss appropriate arrangements with their supervisor, including working from home if possible, catching up on training or accreditation, review procedures etc.

3. An employee who has been overseas (who left prior to the Federal Government announcement regarding mandatory isolation on 15 March 2020) and is required to self isolate for 14 days on their return, will receive paid special leave (at the base rate of pay) during the 14 day period.

4. An employee who has chosen to travel overseas after the Federal Government announcement on 15 March 2020, and is required to self isolate for 14 days on their return, will be required to take either annual leave or unpaid leave for the 14 day period.

5. Employees who are diagnosed as positive for COVID-19, or who are displaying symptoms, or who are otherwise ill and unfit for work are required to take personal/ carers (sick) leave as normal. Similarly, an employee required to care for a direct member of their household who is ill should similarly take personal/ carers leave.

6. Employees required to care for children as a consequence of a school being closed as a result of the COVID-19, should work from home where possible. If this is not possible, the employee should take personal/carers leave or annual leave.

This situation is constantly evolving. Governments across Australia are responding in different ways, so PN may review the above categories in the future. We will ensure any change is designed to protect YOUR interests.

You are playing – and will continue to play – a critical role in making sure vital goods make their way to supermarkets, retails stories, petrol stations, flour mills and manufacturing plants.

Thank you for everything you are doing to keep our freight networks moving during these unprecedented times. Do not underestimate the critical role you are playing to help Australia get through the challenges ahead.

You have an essential role to play, but that is why it is also essential that you protect your own health and safety.

If you are not feeling well, please do not put your health and the health of your work mates at risk. Stay at home and seek medical advice. Likewise, if you are concerned that your employer is putting your health, and the health of others at risk, please contact your Workplace Delegate or Organiser immediately.

Click here to download the update.