The HSU is proud to announce a number of big wins for disability and in-home care workers.

After nearly half a decade of campaigning and advocating for change, this week the Fair Work Commission agreed with the HSU and other unions to make a range of changes to the Social, Community, Home Care and Disability Services Industry Award  (SCHADS Award).

Some of these key changes include:

  • Minimum engagements of 2-hours for part-time and casual disability and home care workers (this means that you have to be paid for a minimum of 2-hours for a single shift).
  • Limits on the use of “broken shifts” so that there can only be a maximum of two unpaid breaks in a shift, you have to agree to work a broken shift and you will receive an additional allowance if you work a broken shift.
  • Better protections for part-time workers who work additional hours. These include that any additional hours are voluntary and establishing a process for workers to increase the number of their minimum contracted hours if they consistently work extra hours.
  • Making it easier for workers to swap shifts.

The Fair Work Commission also agreed that travel time between clients should be compensated, however, hasn’t yet decided on how this should be implemented.

For more detail, you can read a summary of the decision here.

What next?

These changes won’t happen immediately. The Fair Work Commission has asked the HSU along with other unions and employer groups to make comment on its decision before it is finalised. This process should finish up by the 30th of June 2021 and we will continue to keep members updated.

Importantly, while these changes apply to the SCHADS Award, future enterprise agreements cannot have lesser conditions than the Award. This means this decision is a victory for all disability and home care workers.

This victory was only made possible by the tireless work of HSU members. If you know of any colleagues who aren’t yet HSU members, pass this news onto them and encourage them to join today!

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