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Personal Leave Provisions Improved
AFTER months of negotiations important changes have been made to the Personal Leave provisions in the Tasmanian State Service Award that will make accessing provisions easier and remove some strange interpretations that have recently emerged.
1. Statutory declarations can be used to replace medical certificates
Under the new provisions a statutory declaration can be used if it isn’t reasonably practicable to obtain a medical certificate in all circumstances. It doesn’t matter if it’s your first day of personal leave in a personal leave year or your 10th – if you can’t get a medical certificate you can complete a statutory declaration and your application will be accepted. The new provision also defines what a statutory declaration is and notes the penalties for making a false declaration.
2. Carer’s Leave
Under the old provision carers leave was available to provide care and support. This has now been changed so carers leave is to provide care or support. While this change seems minor it will stop one Department from refusing carers leave for parents supporting their child in hospital. That Department decided that as the hospital was providing the care and the parent only providing support then it didn’t meet the definition of carers leave.
3. Manager’s Raising Concerns about Personal Leave
The new provision includes a process for managers to follow if they’re not satisfied with an employee’s evidence provided to support an application for personal leave. The manager must detail their concerns and give the employee a reasonable time to respond. Any action taken under this clause can be reviewed through the grievance process if the employee believes they’ve been treated unfairly.