Union Win – New COVID Sick Leave Entitlement for Public Sector Employees

Wednesday 09 Feb 2022

After strong ongoing advocacy, including a written submission, from the Health Services Union of WA, the State Government have announced an extension of the 20 days COVID Leave to cover COVID illness for all public sector employees. 

  • Previously, the 20 days COVID Leave entitlement only applied to testing and isolation requirements. This meant public sector health employees who test positive with COVID-19 were required to exhaust their personal and annual leave. 
  • Now if you test positive with COVID-19 you will be able to access paid COVID Leave (up to 20 days) before using your personal leave or annual leave. (The 20 days has also been reinstated for all public sector employees from 5 February 2022) 

We believe this is something that all health workers should have been offered up front, given the high risk of contracting COVID-19 at work.  

We can’t make important change like this alone. It is thanks to all HSUWA Union Members that advocacy and submissions were made to the Health Minister and employers. 

Congratulations to all HSUWA Members who have won a better entitlement which will benefit everyone across the public sector.  

Your commitment to your colleagues and your voices matter. And remember it was public sector union members who won 20 days COVID Leave initially, back in 2020.  

Its welcome news that the State Government has listened and responded, and we will continue to push for other initiatives to protect and support Members across public and private health, including: 

  • A COVID surge allowance for all frontline health workers 
  • Adequate provision of PPE  
  • Safe staffing levels  
  • Secure jobs  
  • Better pay rises 

This work ties into the Unions’ claims in the next Union Agreement 2022 that will set public sector health workers' pay and conditions from 1 July 2022 and our private sector enterprise bargaining work.

If you a not yet a Union Member, we encourage you to join your colleagues and achieve fairer pay and conditions together. Join today


In Unity,


Naomi McCrae 

Secretary, HSUWA 

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