WA introduces changes to long service leave regulations for local government workers

Changes seek to bring clarity, certainty to thousands of local government employees

WA introduces changes to long service leave regulations for local government workers

The Western Australia government has unveiled significant changes to its long service leave regulations in a bid to enhance the rights and benefits of local government employees.

"These changes bring clarity to employees' entitlements in different situations, and we expect it will be easier for local government employers to calculate and administer long service leave," said Local Government Minister Hannah Beazley in a statement.

The changes will take effect on September 1 and introduce the following:

  • A longer permitted period of break between local government sector employers that maintains the employee's continuity of service
  • Allowing for parental leave pay from the Australian Government to count towards long service leave accrual
  • Allowing advanced long service leave and the cashing out of long service leave
  • Clear protections for the entitlements in the event of unfair or unlawful dismissal

The changes will provide certainty to around 23,000 Western Australian local government workers, including those who have worked casually or part-time, or who have moved between employers.

"Ensuring part-time or casual workers have fair access to long service leave is especially important for women and younger people in our local government workforce," Beazley said.

The changes come after the previous regulations and corresponding industrial relations scheme had not been substantially updated since their introduction in 1977, according to the WA government.

"Replacing these outdated regulations is just one part of the Cook Government's reform agenda, which delivers the biggest improvements to WA's local government system in 25 years," Beazley said.

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