? Health News
- The NSW vaccine program is underway, with the Astra Zeneca vaccine continuing to be used for over 50s. To find out when your turn will come and which GP practices have vaccines available, use the Vaccines Eligibility Checker: https://covid-vaccine.healthdirect.gov.au/eligibility Does your business have a COVID vaccine policy in place?
- NSW Dine & Discover vouchers are now available – register now: https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/transaction/apply-dine-discover-nsw-vouchers
ℹ Regional News
- The NSW Government has announced that it will subsidise half the cost of hotel quarantine for agricultural workers to support the agricultural sector, with the lack of travellers and seasonal workers in the country leading to over $52million of crop losses since December. GrowCom, the peak horticulture body, estimates that Australia needs about 26,000 people to cover the shortfall. Agricultural workers are not included in NSW’s weekly arrivals cap.
- Availability of housing continues to be a significant barrier to employment for both locals and migrating workers, with rental vacancies in many areas of regional NSW under 1 per cent, and the growth in median house prices outstripping Sydney.
- The University of New England has postponed its graduation ceremonies, with significant knock on effects to visitor services providers in the area.
? Business & Employment News
- Do you employ casuals? Make sure you’re up to date on the recent changes to the rules around casuals: https://mailchi.mp/8a0ddfc390bd/casual-employment-information-statement-8111254
- Senate hearings start today on the “gig economy” and rights and protections for those workers. While food delivery companies such as Uber and Deliveroo are facing significant criticism over their staffing practices, the gig economy is bigger than just food delivery, with other services such as disability providers HireUp and Mable also utilising independent contractor arrangements. As with all independent contractor agreements, the reality of the relationship is more important than the contract in determining workers’ rights, so if you are using independent contractors in your business, make sure you meet the requirements: https://www.business.gov.au/people/contractors/employee-or-contractor
- The unfolding story of significant cultural issues in politics has continued this week, with former staffers from WA Labor offices revealing claims of workplace bullying. Do you have harassment and bullying policies in place in your business? Does your workplace culture support these policies, or are they just window dressing? Toxic workplaces can kill a business – if you think you need help, please reach out #wevegotyourback