Kmart staff in Orange could be given five days of domestic violence leave if they require it under a proposed enterprise bargaining agreement.
Housing Plus head of community services Penny Dordoy welcomed the proposal and said she’s seen more and more businesses including Orange City Council and the Western NSW Local Health District introduce initiatives to help staff who were experiencing domestic violence.
“We really support Kmart taking on this initiative because we know that one in three people who experience domestic violence are in the paid workforce,” Ms Dordoy said.
“Many organisations have reached out to Housing Plus to look at a range of ways to support employees of domestic violence.”
She said it was easier for larger organisations to give paid leave but there were a range of solutions; some businesses offered employees work in back rooms in non-customer facing positions if they continued to be harassed at work, and some offered a car spot under the building the victim worked in.
We’re particularly pleased the new Kmart agreement will contain a total of five days domestic violence leave, with two being fully paid and three unpaid.SDA national secretary Gerard Dwyer
The proposed Kmart agreement has the backing of the union, the SDA, and Orange workers would be able to vote on the agreement between November 21 and 30.
SDA national secretary Gerard Dwyer said the proposal included two days of paid domestic violence leave.
“We’re particularly pleased the new Kmart agreement will contain a total of five days domestic violence leave, with two being fully paid and three unpaid,” Mr Dwyer said.
“It is incumbent upon business, government and unions to work collectively to address this problem, and I’m pleased we’ve been able to take these first steps together.”
He said the agreement was developed in consultation with hundreds of Kmart delegates across Australia and contained a sign-on bonus of up to $450 (pro rata), higher weekday pay rates and increased pay rates on weekends and weeknights.
“The new agreement also succeeds in protecting take-home pay by preserving higher base rates of pay for existing workers, while ensuring all Kmart staff receive pay rises every six months.”
There were also an additional 15-minute rest break and improved rostering arrangements.
He said casual workers would also receive penalty rate increases after 6pm Monday to Friday, and a 25 per cent penalty rate increase for all ordinary hours worked on a Saturday.
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