? Health News
- The Delta COVID-19 strain is responsible for the current outbreak in Sydney, with 11 cases identified so far and a growing list of case locations and alerts. If you’ve been around Sydney in the last 10 days, please visit https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/covid-19/Pages/case-locations-and-alerts.aspx to see if you’ve been to an affected venue and get tested if you have the slightest symptoms. Restrictions have been increased slightly with masks now mandatory on public transport across Sydney, and an indoor mask mandate in place for 7 LGAs across the eastern and western suburbs. A number of states have changed their entry requirements for NSW residents so please check before you travel.
- Victoria’s outbreak appears to be coming to an end, with 5 consecutive days of one or fewer new local cases and the majority of those found in people already isolating. Restrictions should ease further later this week.
- Extensive vaccination coverage is the best way for Australia to avoid further lockdowns and manage any outbreaks that do occur. Find out how to book in for your vaccine here: https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/health-and-wellbeing/covid-19-vaccination-nsw/getting-vaccinated
- Dine and Discover NSW vouchers have been extended to 31 July so if you haven’t used yours yet, there’s still time! For more information visit www.service.nsw.gov.au/campaign/dine-discover-nsw
? Regional News
- The NSW Government budget will be released this Tuesday 22 June, with regional leaders hoping for funding to address major issues across regional areas including the healthcare crisis, social housing and funding gaps for community projects. Continued funding has already been announced for mobile and community preschool services to remain free for families, although there remains a chronic shortage of available places in regional towns.
- Country agricultural shows are continuing to face challenges in 2021, with the cost of complying with COVID-19 restrictions and the unavailability of insurance making many events financially unviable.
- UNE and Moree Plains Shire Council are collaborating on a new industry-centric tertiary education hub in Moree, with the goal of keeping local students in Moree and offer access to higher education to those unable to travel for study.
? Business & Employment News
- A reminder that the superannuation guarantee rises to 10% from 1 July 2021. If your employment contracts state that superannuation is on top of annual salary (e.g. $50,000 pa plus super), you need to pay extra into your employee’s super. If superannuation is included (e.g. $50,000 incl super), businesses can decide how to share the cost between employer and employee; however, the purpose of the rising guarantee is to increase super balances, not decrease take-home pay. What has your business decided to do?
- The Fair Work Commission has announced a 2.5% increase to the national minimum wage commencing from 1 July 2021. The rises will be staggered again this year, with most awards increasing from 1 July 2021. Pinnacle People Solutions will be releasing a full explainer to our email subscriber list this week; to sign up, visit http://eepurl.com/dvHHc5
- Think the minimum wage increase doesn’t apply to you? If you have employees on flat hourly rates that at one stage met the Better Off Overall Test, it’s a good time to check if they are still better off. We have had a number of clients recently whose flat rates have fallen behind award conditions. Contact us for an obligation-free consultation.
- May 2021 Labour Force results have been release by the ABS, with employment up, unemployment down, underemployment down and hours worked up. The skills shortage across the nation (but particularly in regional areas) is becoming more acute as unemployment falls.