Unpaid domestic violence leave

During the Modern Award Review process over the last year, the Australian Council of Trade Unions sought to have inserted into Modern Awards, a provision providing employees with paid and unpaid family and domestic violence leave. The Commission found that the ACTU’s suggestion was too broad and would be difficult to apply. 

The Commission however decided to include five days unpaid domestic violence leave and a standard clause for inclusion in all Modern Awards. This is expected to be finalised by the end of June 2018

The new requirement will:

  • Apply to all employees (including casuals) who are experiencing family and domestic violence;
  • Be available in full at the commencement of each 12 month period rather than accruing progressively during a year of service;
  • Not accumulate from year to year; and
  • Be available in full to part-time and casual employees (i.e. not pro-rated).

The Commission also decided not to require employees to access any available paid leave entitlement before accessing unpaid family and domestic violence leave.  

When accessing the new leave entitlement, an employee, if required by their employer, must provide evidence, which may include a document issued by the police, a court or a family violence support service, or a statutory declaration.

Disclaimer: the short summary above is not legal advice and for more information on the leave entitlements call NECA Legal (WA) Pty Ltd on (08) 6241 6129 or email necalegalwa@necawa.asn.au.