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THIS week we’ve seen floods devastate several parts of our state, with schools closed and rising waters making roads impassable.
To ensure there’s a fair and consistent approach we contacted the State Service Management Office received the following advice from the SSMO:
There have been a number of enquiries from Agencies and unions as to the approach being taken to manage absences from the workplace as a result of the flooding currently affecting the State. In these cases. it is a matter of a reasonable approach by both Agencies to be flexible and reasonable in considering cases and their employees making reasonable attempts to be at work. Employees are being affected in a number of ways including damage to property, school and road closures.
The health and safety of employees during this time remains the priority and agencies must ensure that employees don’t take any unnecessary risks trying to get to work in flood affected areas. At the same time, a number of employees will have caring responsibilities as a result of road and school closures.
Subject to individual circumstances special leave may be granted by the appropriate delegate in an Agency under State Service Regulation 25 to an employee who is protecting their property, has been evacuated, or other pressing necessity directly relating to the floods that are occurring in Tasmania at present.
For employees who are unable to attend their normal workplace or another workplace in the near vicinity due to road, school and other facilities closures it is expected that agencies will take a flexible, case-by case approach to approving within the range of options available that may be appropriate including, working from home, time off in lieu, flex time, and personal leave where the criteria are met. In cases where the workplace is closed and alternative arrangements are not available a leave application is not required.