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Personal Leave

Personal leave is in every SDA Agreement and is one of the National Employment Standards (NES).

Personal leave covers sick leave and carer’s leave which means employees can access their personal leave to provide care or support to a member of their immediate family or household who is unwell or has a medical emergency.

The NES provides that permanent employees accrue up to 10 days of sick leave per year.

Ring your workplace as soon as possible, and inform your store manager or the most senior person.

Try not to send an SMS or message over a social media platform as these may be missed by the recipient.

Try to give as much notice as possible that you are unable to come into work.

Check your SDA negotiated agreement for the specific personal leave clauses.

If you’re sick, you can’t work at full capacity, and may be risking your safety and that of your fellow workers if you go to work.

It is especially important at the moment to ensure that if you feel unwell that you do not attend work.

Sick leave should only be used when you are genuinely ill.

It’s counterproductive for employers to insist on sick workers coming into work because germs can be spread among fellow workers.

Some employers may say “We can’t replace you… you are going to have to come in.”

This is wrong and may set back your recovery and going to work is not only unhealthy for you, it’s bad for your workplace.

If you need help please call your local SDA branch for assistance. You can find their contact details here.

Casual workers don’t get paid sick leave, but they receive a higher rate of pay in the form of a casual loading to compensate for this.

Casual workers are entitled to take unpaid sick leave.

Some Agreements provide for two single-day absences annually without the need for a medical certificate.

After this, employees can be asked to provide either a medical certificate or a Statutory Declaration.

In general, casual employees are not required to provide medical certificates.

While a medical certificate is the best form of evidence, other forms of evidence such as a statutory declaration or as a last resort, a pharmacy certificate may be sufficient.

All these details are in your Agreement or the NES.

Thanks to the SDA, paid personal leave is a right for every permanent retail, fast food and warehouse worker.                                                             

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For more information on your workplace rights during Coronavirus click here.