MINISTERS STATEMENTS: SICK PAY GUARANTEE
MR PALLAS (Werribee—Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Minister for Industrial Relations) (14:13):
It gives me great pleasure to talk about the Andrews Labor government’s continuing efforts to ensure that we reduce the harms of insecure work right across this state.
Whether it be through the portable long service leave scheme, the fair jobs code, our nation-leading labour hire licensing scheme, our wage theft laws or of course industrial manslaughter laws, we understand that insecure work brings with it many attendant risks. So last week the Andrews Labor government once again lived large its values.
The Victorian sick pay guarantee is a nation-leading pilot that will give our casual and contract workers the safety net in order to ensure that they can take the time off that they need when they are sick or indeed care for loved ones when they too are sick.
Over 150 000 eligible workers in Victoria will now be able to access five days a year of sick and carers leave at a national minimum wage rate.
The pilot will be funded entirely by government to the tune of $245.6 million for phase 1 of the pilot scheme.
Phase 1 will target sectors where we know that job insecurity is a real and attendant problem: hospitality, food preparation, cleaning and laundry work, supermarkets and aged-care workers, amongst others.
The guarantee will deliver a significant productivity boost for all Victorians through reduced workplace injury and reduced spread of infectious disease.
It will be a boost for all of us, not just for insecure workers, and it will be a boost for business as their reputations are not put at risk through the insidious capacity of disease to spread throughout their workplaces.
The Victorian sick pay guarantee will provide the safety net our most vulnerable workers need and indeed deserve.