Natural Disasters and Workplace Rights

Natural Disasters and Workplace Rights

The Fair Work Ombudsman has updated its guidance to employees and employers with respect to workplace rights noting the widespread flooding in NSW.

We recommend employers affected by the flooding (or with employees impacted by the flooding) review the guidance and make sure they understand their rights and obligations, including:

  • All employees, including casuals, are entitled to take community service leave for certain voluntary emergency management activities (i.e., registered volunteers for the SES);
  • Defence Reservists may be called to help with the floods. Defence Reservists have rights and protections when they are absent from work, including the right to be released from work and to continue to be employed on their return;
  • Options with respect to standing down employees because of a stoppage of work caused by severe weather; and
  • Properly considering and addressing new or heightened workplace health and safety risks, particularly where employees may need to travel through flood-affected areas to attend work or perform work.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to the team at TLB Law & Co if you have any questions regarding this or other employment-related issues.

IMPORTANT NOTICE – The information contained in this article is not intended to be comprehensive. It is general in nature and is not intended to be used as a substitute for legal or other professional advice. You must seek specific professional advice tailored to your personal circumstances before taking any action based on this article.

Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.

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