OAIC Enterprise Agreement 2011–2014
Contents on this page
1.1 This Agreement will be known as the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner Enterprise Agreement 2011–2014.
1.2 This Agreement was made under section 172 of the Fair Work Act 2009.
2.1 This Agreement covers the:
- Australian Information Commissioner and
- employees of the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC), subject to Clause 3; and
- the Community Public Sector Union (CPSU).
2.2 The parties to this Agreement are bound by its terms.
3.1 This Agreement applies to all employees with the exception of:
(i) members of the Senior Executive Service;
(ii) employees on secondment arrangements whose salaries are payable by organisations other than the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.
3.2 Employees acting temporarily in Senior Executive Service positions may continue to be subject to this Agreement. Any additional entitlements may be determined by the delegate.
4.1 This Agreement commences 7 days after the date this Agreement is approved by Fair Work Australia or 1 July 2011 whichever is the later and has a nominal expiry date of 30 June 2014.
5.1 Other Commonwealth laws concerned with employment, such as (but not limited to) the:
- Public Service Act 1999
- Privacy Act 1988
- Fair Work Act 2009
- Long Service Leave (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1976
- Maternity Leave (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1973
- Paid Parental Leave Act 2010
- Superannuation Act 1976
- Superannuation Act 1990
- Superannuation Benefits (Supervisory Mechanisms) Act 1990
- Superannuation Productivity Benefit Act 1988
continue to apply according to their terms.
5.2 There are policies and guidelines that support the operation of this Agreement. The policies and guidelines are not incorporated into and do not form part of this Agreement. If there is any inconsistency between the policies and guidelines and the express terms of this Agreement, the express terms of the Agreement will prevail to the extent of any inconsistency.
5.3 Subject to Clause 6, this Agreement constitutes a closed agreement in the settlement of all matters for its duration. The parties to this Agreement agreed that for the life of the Agreement there will be no further claims, except where consistent with the terms of this Agreement.
5.4 While recognising that the usual form of employment is ongoing, consistent with s 22 of the Public Service Act, the Australian Information Commissioner reserves the right to employ staff on a non-ongoing basis. Non-ongoing employees may be employed on an irregular or intermittent basis, or for a specified term or a specified task.
6.1 The OAIC and an employee covered by this Enterprise Agreement may agree to make an individual flexibility arrangement to vary the effect of terms of the Agreement if:
(i) The arrangement deals with one or more of the following matters:
a. arrangements about when work is performed
b. overtime rates
c. penalty rates
e. remuneration and/or
f. leave, and
(ii) The arrangement meets the genuine needs of the OAIC and employee in relation to one or more of the matters mentioned in paragraph (a); and
(iii) The arrangement is genuinely agreed to by the OAIC and the employee.
6.2 The OAIC must ensure that the terms of the individual flexibility arrangement:
(i) are about permitted matters under s 172 of the Fair Work Act 2009
(ii) are not unlawful terms under s 194 of the Fair Work Act 2009, and
(iii) result in the employee being better off overall than the employee would be if no arrangement was made.
6.3 The OAIC must ensure that the individual flexibility arrangement:
(i) is in writing
(ii) includes the name of the employer and employee
(iii) is signed by the delegate and employee and if the employee is under 18 years of age, signed by a parent or guardian of the employee
(iv) includes details of:
a. the terms of the Enterprise Agreement that will be varied by the arrangement
b. how the arrangement will vary the effect of the terms
c. how the employee will be better off overall in relation to the terms and conditions of his or her employment as a result of the arrangement; and
(v) states the day on which the arrangement commences and, where applicable, when the arrangement ceases.
6.4 The OAIC must give the employee a copy of the individual flexibility arrangement within 14 days after it is agreed to.
6.5 The OAIC or employee may terminate the individual flexibility arrangement:
(i) by giving no more than 28 days written notice to the other party to the arrangement
(ii) if the OAIC and employee agree in writing – at any time.
7.1 This Agreement may be varied by application to Fair Work Australia pursuant to Division 7, of Part 2-4 of the Fair Work Act 2009.
‘Action’ includes a refusal or failure to act.
‘FWA’ means Fair Work Australia.
‘APS’ means the Australian Public Service.
‘Delegate’ means the Australian Information Commissioner or someone delegated with the powers and functions of the Australian Information Commissioner.
‘Director’ means an employee at the EL2 classification.
‘Employee’ means an ‘employee’ whether full-time or part-time employed by the OAIC under and within the meaning of the Public Service Act 1999.
‘Family’ means the member of an employee’s family or a significant other person who has a strong affinity with the employee including immediate family as defined under s 12 of the Fair Work Act.
‘Maternity Leave’ is a period of absence of up to 52 weeks in accordance with the Maternity Leave (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1973.
‘Registered Health Practitioner’ means a medical service provider or alternative health provider, licensed or registered, and recognised by a private health fund or by Comcare.
‘Medical evidence’ means a certificate provided by a Registered Health Practitioner as defined above.
‘NES’ means the National Employment Standards
OAIC means the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.
‘Salary’ is the employee’s rate of salary/pay (in accordance with the salary/pay rates at Appendix B) and will be salary for all purposes. Specifically, where salary sacrifice arrangements and purchased leave options or other relevant arrangements are in place, the employee’s salary for purposes of superannuation, severance and termination payments will be determined as if the salary sacrifice or other arrangement had not been entered into.
‘SES’ means Senior Executive Service.
‘Supervisor’ means the employee responsible for a section or team within the OAIC.
9.1 If a dispute relates to:
(i) a matter arising under the Agreement, or
(ii) the National Employment Standards
this term sets out the procedures to settle the dispute.
9.2 An employee who is party to the dispute may appoint a representative for the purposes of the procedures in this term.
9.3 In the first instance the parties to the dispute must try to resolve the dispute at the workplace level, by discussions between the employee or employees and relevant supervisors and/or management.
9.4 If discussions at the workplace level do not resolve the dispute, a party may refer the matter to Fair Work Australia.
9.5 Fair Work Australia may deal with the dispute in two stages:
(i) Fair Work Australia will first attempt to resolve the dispute as it considers appropriate, including by mediation, conciliation, expressing an opinion or making a recommendation; and
(ii) if Fair Work Australia is unable to resolve the dispute at the first stage, Fair Work Australia may then:
a. arbitrate the dispute
b. make a determination that is binding on the parties.
Note if Fair Work Australia arbitrates the dispute, it may also use the powers that are available to it under the Act.
A decision that Fair Work Australia makes when arbitrating a dispute is a decision for the purpose of Division 3 of Part 5.1 of the Act. Therefore, an appeal may be made against the decision.
9.6 While the parties are trying to resolve the dispute using the procedures in this term:
(i) an employee must continue to perform his or her work as he or she would normally unless he or she has a reasonable concern about an imminent risk to his or her health or safety
(ii) an employee must comply with a direction given by the employer to perform other available work at the same workplace, or at another workplace, unless:
a. the work is not safe
b. applicable occupational health and safety legislation would not permit the work to be performed
c. the work is not appropriate for the employee to perform
d. there are other reasonable grounds for the employee to refuse to comply with the direction.
9.7 The parties to the dispute agree to be bound by a decision made by Fair Work Australia in accordance with this term.
10.1 The Australian Information Commissioner may delegate any or all of his or her powers and functions under this Agreement, including the power of delegation and may do so subject to conditions but no such delegation shall prevent the personal exercise by the Australian Information Commissioner of a power or function so delegated.
11.1 This Agreement is to assist the OAIC in achieving its purpose, vision, and strategic goals, as reflected in the OAIC's Strategic Plan 2011–14.
11.2 Consistent with the APS Values, the OAIC is committed to effective workplace relations that value communication, consultation with employees and their representatives and cooperation and input from employees about matters that affect their workplace. In keeping with this commitment, the OAIC will facilitate a cooperative and consultative workplace through agreed consultation arrangements (see Appendix A and B).
11.3 This Agreement recognises the challenges the OAIC faces as a newly established independent statutory agency. It also recognises the opportunities the OAIC and its staff have to create an organisation that delivers valued services to Parliament, government agencies, private entities, interest groups and the public while also offering a welcoming and flexible workplace in which staff have the opportunity to develop their skills and expertise.
12.1 The OAIC is committed to delivering high quality professional public service. In implementing this Agreement, the OAIC will act ethically and lawfully as an employer. In implementing this Agreement and in undertaking his or her duties, an employee shall comply with the Australian Public Service Values and Code of Conduct and shall not behave in a way contrary to the interest of the OAIC.
12.2 In addition to the APS Code of Conduct, OAIC employees must comply with OAIC policies and guidelines and use the resources, equipment and facilities of the OAIC in a proper and lawful manner, recognising the particular nature of the OAIC’s role and functions.
12.3 Breaches of the Code of Conduct:
(i) Matters concerning possible breaches of the Code of Conduct as specified at 12.1and 12.2 above, will be dealt with in accordance with Breaches to the Code of Conduct procedures established by the OAIC pursuant to relevant provisions of the Public Service Act 1999, Public Service Commissioner's Directions and the Public Service Regulations 1999 and principles governing the application of natural justice.
(ii) Non-ongoing employees and employees on probation are excluded from the provisions of Clause 12.3 as this is dealt with under the terms of their engagement. See also Probation guidelines.
13.1 The OAIC is an organisation which values fairness, equity and diversity. Consistent with that aim, the OAIC is committed to preventing and eliminating discrimination on the basis of race, colour, gender, sexual preference, age, disability, marital status, family responsibilities, pregnancy, religion, political opinion, irrelevant criminal record, national extraction, membership or non-membership of a trade union or social origin.
13.2 The OAIC has a Workplace diversity program which recognises and values the diverse skills, cultural values and backgrounds of its employees. The program includes strategies to remedy employment related disadvantages of women, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people of non-English speaking background and people with disabilities.
13.3 The OAIC recognises the need for a supportive and flexible workplace to enable employees to combine work and family responsibilities. The Agreement contains clauses that support and promote flexible, family friendly practices and includes access to part time work, home-based work, parental leave and personal/carers leave which assist employees balance their family and work responsibilities.
13.4 The OAIC is committed to implementing initiatives under its Reconciliation Action Plan and will make all reasonable endeavours to increase employment opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
14.1 The OAIC will consider, assess and respond to employee requests for changes to work arrangements in a transparent, prompt and reasonable manner, generally within 21 days of receiving a written request. If a decision cannot be made within 21 days, the employee will be advised of the reason for the delay and when a decision can be expected.
14.2 If the request is refused, the reason for the refusal will be provided in writing.
15.1 The purpose of the OAIC’s Performance management and development scheme is to strengthen and support the OAIC in performing its functions by providing regular and formal assessment of employees’ work performance and to provide employees with skill development and career advancement opportunities.
15.2 Participation in, and operation of, the scheme will be in accordance with the Performance management and development scheme guidelines.
15.3 Annual assessment of an employee's performance will be the basis of salary progression within the pay points assigned to their classification and may also be taken into account:
(i) when considering an employee for temporary reassignment of duties or promotion
(ii) as a basis to commence proceedings in relation to the unsatisfactory performance of duties or misconduct.
15.4 Employees and supervisors will develop a performance agreement and employees will have their work performance assessed and rated by their immediate supervisors. Employees will be eligible to advance by one salary point in the relevant classification pay range subject to meeting the performance standard rating of ‘effective’ or better, as set out in the Performance management and development scheme guidelines. Employees not rated ‘effective’ will not be eligible for salary progression and may be subject to proceedings noted at Clause 17 on ‘Managing Underperformance’.
15.5 The OAIC is committed to providing regular feedback on performance to staff and recognises that the performance management scheme is one avenue for this.
15.6 Employees who are not satisfied with the supervisor’s assessment may request a review by following the OAIC’s procedures in respect to review of employment decisions contained in Clause 52.
16.1 The OAIC is committed to providing opportunities for employees to gain and maintain the skills needed to do their jobs and assisting employees to achieve their full potential by supporting learning and development opportunities. The OAIC recognises the importance of supporting the development of our employees to achieve the best possible outcomes for our clients.
16.2 The OAIC will develop a Learning and development policy to support employees. The policy will set out the principles to guide learning and development in the OAIC, the development opportunities for staff and the ways in which learning and development opportunities will be provided.
16.3 Learning and development activities will:
(i) have a clear connection with the work of the OAIC
(ii) have a direct link to individuals’ work responsibilities
(iii) assist ongoing career development.
16.4 The parties to this Agreement are committed to adequate training support to accompany changes, innovations or improvements to work arrangements (eg the development of competency in giving and receiving performance feedback and the introduction of new information technologies).
16.5 Performance agreements will play a vital role in identifying learning and development needs for employees on an individual, work unit and agency basis.
16.6 Reimbursement of reasonable expenses when attending learning and development activities:
The OAIC will, subject to prior approval of such arrangements including the cost, reimburse reasonable additional expenses arising from additional care arrangements when the employee is required to attend a particular learning and development activity outside normal hours of work or away from his or her normal work location.
16.7 Studies assistance:
The OAIC has a commitment to support employees undertaking formal studies that are relevant both to the OAIC and the employee’s personal career development. Information on provisions and obligations are contained in the OAIC’s Studies assistance guidelines.
All ongoing employees not on probation and non-ongoing employees with more than 6 months service may apply for approval as a student. For non-ongoing employees, approval will depend on the benefits of the study to the position they are employed in and have regard to the remaining length of their employment.
(ii) Approval of proposed course of study
An employee’s proposed course of study must be approved by the delegate for the employee to have any access to any form of studies assistance.
In assessing an application, the OAIC will consider the:
- benefit and relevance of the proposed course of study to the OAIC
- career development needs of the employee
- operational and resource issues
- capacity of the employee to balance the study commitments with her or his work responsibilities.
(iii) Study leave
Approval for study leave is not an automatic entitlement but may be granted subject to operational requirements of the OAIC and equity with other employees of the OAIC.
The OAIC may grant paid study leave or study leave without pay to approved students so that they may undertake study activities including:
- lectures and tutorials
- practical and field work
- residential seminars
- research/thesis writing
- essay or exam preparation.
Employees who have been unable to complete schooling or commence tertiary studies due to personal circumstances will be encouraged to apply for assistance.
(iv) Financial studies assistance
Approved students may apply for financial assistance up to $500 per semester per completed subject. This is payable on the successful completion of the subject and is intended to reimburse approved students for some of their course fees and other associated costs. Approved students must supply a copy of their course fees and/or other associated costs prior to receiving reimbursement.
Students must provide proof that the semester of study has been successfully completed (eg exam results).
(v) Advice of approval
Employees will be advised in writing of approval of their proposed course of study, study leave and/or financial assistance. Where a request is refused the employee may seek a review of the decision under Clause 52 of this Agreement.
17.1 The procedures for managing underperformance only apply to ongoing employees who are not on probation. They do not apply to non-ongoing employees. They do not apply in cases of suspected breaches of the Code of Conduct or where there is a health-related reason for unsatisfactory performance or where an essential qualification has been lost.
17.2 Where an employee’s performance consistently falls below an acceptable level it may be necessary to implement the procedures for managing poor performance.
17.3 A structured performance assessment plan must be developed. The performance assessment plan will be implemented over a period of time determined by the delegate not exceeding 2 months unless there are exceptional circumstances.
17.4 The assessment process must have regard for the principles of procedural fairness, and natural justice and consider issues of privacy.
17.5 Where the delegate determines, on the basis of the assessment, that the employee’s performance remains unsatisfactory; he or she will commence action to:
- assign the employee to other duties
- reduce the employee’s classification
- terminate the employee
- take some other form of appropriate action.
18.1 Salary increases as follows:
(i) 3% from 7 days after the date this Agreement is approved by Fair Work Australia or 1 July 2011, whichever is the later
(ii) 3% from 1 July 2012, and
(iii) 3% from 1 July 2013.
18.2 The percentage increases stipulated in sub-Clause 18.1 are payable in recognition of the ongoing participation and cooperation of employees to enhance productivity and efficiency in the OAIC, including:
(i) implementation of improved attraction and retention strategies to reduce recruitment and training costs
(ii) use of new technology to reduce data entry, reduce keying errors to achieve greater consistency and streamlining in processes, automate manual processes and automate reporting functions
(iii) use of video-conferencing to reduce the need for travel
(iv) increasing productivity through increasing work hours from 7 hours 21 minutes per day to 7 hours 30 minutes per day for all staff
(v) the OAIC and employees will continue to seek further opportunities for productivity improvements and efficiencies throughout the life of this Agreement. Subject to affordability, the OAIC will seek to maximise staff numbers
(vi) should it be necessary to reduce staff numbers, the OAIC will refer to its Strategic and Branch plans to determine work priorities, and will seek the views of staff through its consultation mechanisms.
18.3 In addition to the percentage increases stipulated in sub-Clause 18.1, an employee who is employed in the OAIC at the date of certification shall be entitled to a bonus of $750 gross, payable on the completion of the first full pay period after commencement of this Agreement. This payment recognises staff contribution to increased productivity. Staff currently on leave will receive this bonus on their resumption of duty. The bonus is subject to taxation at marginal rates.
18.4 The bonus prescribed shall not be regarded as salary for the purposes of superannuation or any entitlements based on salary.
19.1 The range of duties assigned to each position in line with the OAIC’s Work level standards, and the employees engaged to perform them, shall be allocated an approved APS classification within the classification structure included at Appendix C.
19.2 Where an employee commences employment with the OAIC, or is moved or promoted to a position in the OAIC, salary will be payable at the minimum salary point applicable to the employee's position classification unless the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate authorises payment above the minimum point in that salary range having regard to skills, qualifications, experience, market considerations and equity with other employees. The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may authorise payment above the maximum point of the salary range, where immediately prior to commencing with the OAIC, the employee was in receipt of salary above the maximum point in the current salary range.
19.3 Advancement subject to the Performance management and development scheme:
Advancement through the pay points of the employee's position classification shall be in accordance with the provisions of the Performance management and development scheme as specified at Clause 15.4.
19.4 Incorrect salary point:
Where, at the time of engagement, an employee’s salary is set at an incorrect salary point within the applicable salary scale the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may authorise in writing the payment of the correct salary point.
Where an employee requests in writing to perform work at a lower work value level, the OAIC may determine in writing that the employee shall be paid a rate of salary applicable to the lower work value position classification.
19.6 Irregular or intermittent employees:
Non-ongoing employees who are employed on an irregular or intermittent basis for a period of less than 4 days per week and 24 hours per week may be paid an additional loading of 20% of salary in lieu of paid leave and public holidays not worked. Irregular and intermittent employees are entitled to long service leave under the Long Service Leave (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1976.
20.1 An employee shall be paid fortnightly in arrears and by electronic funds transfer into a financial institution account of his or her choice.
In the event of an overpayment of salary or allowances monies will be recovered from future pays in accordance with the OAIC Chief Executive Instructions.
20.2 The fortnightly pay shall be based upon the following formula:
fortnightly pay = remuneration x 12
20.3 A remuneration packaging scheme is available to employees:
(i) An employee may opt to receive a mix of cash and specified non-cash items up to the total value of his or her current salary.
(ii) The remuneration packaging scheme shall be undertaken by a bureau service on behalf of the OAIC and participating employees.
(iii) The total cost of an employee’s participation in the scheme, including the cost of cash, non-cash items, taxation and administration/bureau fees, shall be met by the participating employee.
(iv) The implementation and operation of the remuneration packaging scheme shall be cost neutral for the OAIC.
(v) The salary which would have been used for superannuation purposes and severance and termination payments but for the employee electing the option of remuneration packaging is the salary to be used to determine salary for superannuation purposes and severance and termination payments.
21.1 The filling of short term vacancies by higher duties will only occur where essential to the operational requirements of the OAIC.
21.2 An employee will only be assigned duties at a higher classification level where the period exceeds 15 days or in the case of operational type positions such lesser period as determined by the OAIC.
21.3 Where an employee is assigned duties at higher classification level in excess of 15 days, payment will commence from the beginning of the higher duties period. The parties agree that employees should not be rotated through positions in order to avoid payment of higher duties.
21.4 An employee who is required to undertake duties at a higher classification will not be required to do so without higher remuneration.
21.5 Where an employee is temporarily assigned duties at a higher classification, remuneration will be paid at the minimum rate applicable to the higher classification, unless otherwise determined to be at a higher rate by the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate. The employee shall only be eligible for further salary progression under the OAIC's Performance management and development scheme.
21.6 Where an employee is temporarily assigned duties and the full range of duties is not performed, the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may determine the remuneration to be paid to the employee.
21.7 An employee temporarily assigned duties at a higher classification level shall be entitled to receive the rate applicable for the higher position during a period of paid leave or public holiday provided that the employee would have received the rate applicable for the higher position if he or she had not been absent from the workplace for the period of the paid leave or the public holiday.
21.8 An employee who has been temporarily assigned duties at a higher level and has been assessed, under the OAIC's Performance management and development scheme in accordance with Clause 15.4, to receive a salary increase within the higher classification level may retain that salary point on promotion. The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate will take into account the length of the period of higher duties and how recently the higher duties were performed.
21.9 Where non-Senior Executive Service employees are required to temporarily perform work in Senior Executive Service jobs for more than one week, they will be paid additional salary. The amount of additional salary will be determined by the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate.
22.1 An employee who may be directed by the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate to work outside of standard hours shall be working overtime and shall be entitled to be paid or to receive time off in lieu in accordance with this Clause and the OAIC’s Guidelines on attendance, flextime and overtime procedures. This should not result in the employee working hours which are unreasonable or are a risk to employee health and safety.
22.2 The hourly rate for overtime payment will be ascertained by applying the following formulae:
Time and a half rate:
Double time rate:
Double time and a half rate:
22.3 For the purpose of calculating the formula at 22.2 prescribed weekly hours before overtime is payable will be 37 ½.
22.4 Executive Level employees:
Except with the approval of the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate, an Executive Level 1 or Executive Level 2 employee shall not be subject to the provisions of Clause 22. Where the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate has approved payment to employees at the Executive Level 1 or 2, payment shall be made at the rate applicable to an APS Level 6. Payment of overtime will only be approved for Executive Level employees in exceptional circumstances.
Where the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate and an employee agree, time-off-in-lieu of payment for overtime may be taken, with the time off accrued at the overtime multiplier, within 4 weeks or such other agreed period from the time of working the overtime. Where the time off is not taken within 4 weeks or such other agreed period then payment for the overtime shall be made.
22.6 Monday to Saturday:
Overtime worked Monday to Saturday will be paid at time and a half for the first 3 hours each day and double time thereafter.
Overtime worked on a Sunday will be paid at the rate of double time.
22.8 Public holiday:
Overtime on a Public Holiday will be paid at time and a half during standard hours and double time and a half outside of standard hours (as defined in Clause 27).
22.9 Eight hour break:
An employee who works so much overtime that the employee has not had at least 8 consecutive hours off duty plus reasonable travelling time:
(i) between the termination of the employee’s ordinary duty on any day or shift, and the commencement of the employee’s ordinary work on the next day or shift, or
(ii) on a Saturday, Sunday or a public holiday, not being an ordinary working day, or on a rostered day off, in the 24 hours preceding the employee’s ordinary commencing time on the employee’s next ordinary day or shift
will be granted time off under sub-Clause 22.10.
22.10An employee who is compelled to work so much overtime that the employee fails to meet the requirements of sub-Clause 22.9 will:
(i) be allowed to leave work after such overtime for a period of 8 consecutive hours off duty, plus reasonable travelling time, and will suffer no loss of pay for ordinary working time occurring during the employee’s absence
(ii) provided that if an employee is required to resume or continue work on the specific written instruction of the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate, without having had 8 consecutive hours off duty plus reasonable travelling time in accordance with the employee will be paid at double ordinary time rates (for time worked) until the employee has had 8 consecutive hours off duty plus reasonable travelling time; and
(iii) the employee is to suffer no loss of pay for ordinary working time occurring during the employee’s absence.
22.11 Overtime not continuous with ordinary duty:
Subject to this clause, where an employee is required to perform overtime duty and such duty is not continuous with ordinary duty, the minimum overtime payment for each separate overtime attendance will be 4 hours at the prescribed overtime rate.
22.12 Where more than one attendance is involved, the minimum overtime payment provision will, subject to the prescribed minimum payment, not operate to increase an employee’s overtime remuneration beyond that to which the employee would have been entitled had the employee remained on duty from the commencing time of duty on one attendance to the ceasing time of duty on a subsequent attendance.
22.13 For the purposes of determining whether an overtime attendance is or is not continuous with ordinary duty, or is or is not separate from other duty, meal periods will be disregarded.
22.14 Where an overtime attendance, not continuous with ordinary duty, involves duty both before and after midnight, the minimum payment provisions of this sub-clause will be satisfied when the total payment for the whole of the attendance equals or exceeds the minimum payment applicable to one day. Where a higher overtime rate applies on one of the days, the minimum payment will be calculated at the higher rate.
22.15 Meal allowance:
Where an employee is required to work overtime for periods in excess of 3 hours a meal allowance shall be paid in accordance with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) Reasonable Allowance Rates. This will be varied in line with the ATO's annual Ruling in June of each year. Payment will be made through the payroll system. An additionalamount may be paid for overtime worked in excess of 10 hours. In exceptional circumstances, the delegate may consider a further payment.
22.16 Reimburse reasonable expenses:
Where an employee agrees or is directed to work overtime the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate will, subject to prior approval of such arrangements including the cost, reimburse reasonable additional expenses arising from any additional care arrangements due to the requirement to work overtime.
23.1 The OAIC will make superannuation contributions in accordance with its obligations under relevant legislation.
23.2 Where an employee has chosen an accumulations superannuation fund other than the PSS Accumulation Plan (PSSap), the employer contribution will be the same percentage of the fortnightly superannuation contribution salary as that required for employees who are members of PSSap. This will not be reduced by any other contributions made through salary sacrifice arrangements. This clause does not apply where a superannuation fund cannot accept employer superannuation contributions (e.g. unable to accept contributions for people aged over 75).
Note: At the time of commencement of this Agreement the rate of PSSap employer contribution is 15.4 %.
23.3 Employer superannuation contributions will not be paid on behalf of employees during periods of unpaid leave that does not count as service, unless otherwise prescribed by legislation.
24.1 At the discretion of the delegate, a person moving to the OAIC whose salary in their previous agency (current salary) exceeds the current maximum of the relevant classification level in this Agreement, will be maintained on their current salary until such time as their salary is absorbed by the OAIC pay increases.
25.1 The OAIC acknowledges that employees have to balance their working life with other commitments, including family and the community. This is recognised through the provision of a range of flexible attendance arrangements, leave provisions and assistance programs. When applying flexible attendance arrangements and other employment conditions, the OAIC and its employees will consider the operational needs of the OAIC and any effect on other employees to ensure equitable outcomes.
26.1 The OAIC is committed to providing equitable outcomes for all employees and any part-time requests from ongoing employees have to be balanced with the operational needs of the OAIC and those of other employees in the work area. Employees agree to be flexible in implementing part-time requests.
26.2 The OAIC may support part-time requests from employees for a range of different circumstances, including but not limited to:
(i) return from maternity/parental leave and additional leave under Clauses 36.1, 37and 38 of this Agreement
(ii) pre-retirement transition
(iii) short-term requests such as personal illness, carer needs and study.
26.3 A job sharing request may be supported where it fits within operational requirements.
26.4 All applications for part-time work must be in writing and are subject to the OAIC’s Part-time work policy.
26.5 Proposals for part-time work may be initiated by supervisors.
26.3 A part-time employee shall accrue all entitlements under this Agreement, other than entitlements to reimbursement, on a pro rata basis.
26.4 Where a request is not agreed to, the employee has the right to seek a review of the decision. The OAIC will consider other alternatives where possible, and outline reasons where a request is not supported.
27.1 The delegate will determine all matters relating to hours of duty in accordance with the provisions of this clause to ensure that they are consistent with client access, security and operational requirements of the OAIC.
27.2 The OAIC recognises the need for employees to balance their working life commitments with other competing interests, including family and carer responsibilities and does not expect employees to work unreasonable hours. It is recognised that some employees will need to work extra hours from time to time in order to meet deadlines and deal with unexpected contingencies. It is expected thatsupervisors and employees will implement effective work plans to minimise the need to work additional hours, wherever possible.
27.3 Standard hours and bandwidth:
(i) Standard hours of work shall be 150 hours in each 4-week settlement period.
(ii) Standard hours shall be worked within the bandwidth of 7.30 am to 7.00 pm Monday to Friday.
(iii) A standard day is 8.30 am to 5.00 pm with an hour for lunch between 12.30 pm and 1.30 pm.
27.4 Notwithstanding sub-Clause 27.3(ii), standard hours may be worked outside of the bandwidth where an employee and the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate so agree and where operational and security requirements permit. Agreement should be reviewed on a regular basis to ensure the approved arrangements are operating effectively. Where agreement cannot be reached over a request to work outside the bandwidth times it may be referred to the delegate for resolution.
27.5 Core hours:
Core hours will be 10.00 am to 12.00 midday and 2.00 pm and 4.00 pm unless varied by agreement by an employee and their supervisor. Supervisors will genuinely consider an employee’s personal circumstances when considering any request consistent with Clause 13.3. Employees shall ordinarily be present at work during core hours.
27.6 Unpaid meal breaks:
An employee must not work for longer than 5 hours without an unpaid break for a meal of a minimum of 30 minutes and no longer than 2 hours.
27.7 Start and finish times:
Starting and finishing times within the bandwidth are to be determined by the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate, after consultation with employee/s. To optimise effective client service, supervisors may require employees (including part-time employees, where this is consistent with their ordinary hours) to attend at specific times during general business hours of 8.30 am to 5.00 pm. It is understood that these arrangements should provide employees flexibility to balance work and personal obligations subject to operational requirements of the OAIC, the need for appropriate supervisory arrangements to be in place and occupational health and safety principles.
27.8 Use of taxis after hours:
Where an employee is directed to work after 7.30 pm, the OAIC will provide Cabcharge for the journey home of that employee, subject to prior approval by the relevant supervisor or Director.
Employees classified as APS 1–6 shall have access to flexleave provisions. Administrative arrangements for the operation of the Flexleave provisions are outlined in the OAIC’s Guidelines on attendance, flextime and overtime. Flextime credits accrue only for time worked within the bandwidth or where there is an agreement to work outside the bandwidth. In accessing flexleave:
(i) An employee may not have an accrual in excess of one standard week (or equivalent pro rata for employees working part time) flexleave at the conclusion of any settlement period. Excess flex leave should be utilised in the period that it accrues. Any excess will be reduced automatically to one standard week at the end of the settlement period unless approval is given by the supervisor to carry excessive flex credits forward. This will only occur in exceptional circumstances, eg, periods of high workload. This additional carryover should be used within the next settlement period. The purpose of flex leave is to provide flexibility in work patterns over a regular period and not to build up excessive credits to be used in conjunction with annual leave. An employee may not have a debit of flexleave in excess of 10 hours at the conclusion of any settlement period.
(ii) Periods of absence shall be taken at such times and in such periods as are agreed between the employee and the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate.
(iii) Supervisors must ensure that they manage the hours their team members work so that excessive flextime credits are not accrued without the opportunity for employees to access their flextime leave. If a supervisor identifies that an employee is working excessive hours, they will review employees’ work arrangements in the relevant area to establish whether alternative arrangements are available (eg overtime).
(iv) On termination of employment:
a. outstanding flex credits should be acquitted, where possible, as no payment for accumulated flex will be made
b. flex debit balances should be processed as leave without pay in accordance with the OAIC Chief Executive Instructions.
27.10 Where an employee fails to comply with the provisions of flextime, a supervisor may recommend to the delegate that the employee be removed from the flextime scheme for a specified period. The employee would revert to working standard hours for the specified period.
27.11 Executive Level employees
(i) Remuneration for Executive Level employees incorporates a component to compensate for the extra demands which may be placed on such employees, including working beyond standard hours.
(ii) Executive Level employees have the flexibility to responsibly manage their own workloads to meet operational needs in consultation with their supervisors. Strategies to reduce the need to work unreasonable hours include reviewing workloads, priorities and work practices.
(iii) At times, Executive Level employees may be required to work extended hours during peak workload periods during the week and weekends, but this should not be for lengthy periods. Where it is foreseen that there will be an increase in workload this is to be raised with the Director/Assistant Commissioner as early as possible to address any issues including work priorities and appropriate time off in lieu (TOIL).
(iv) It is expected that any TOIL arrangements will be discussed and considered at the time of the increased workload. Evidence of hours worked may be required. Executive Level employees will be able to access agreed TOIL as soon as possible, subject to operational requirements. Where agreement cannot be reached between an employee and their Director, the matter may be referred to the delegate to resolve.
(v) TOIL will not be on an hour for hour basis.
27.12 Absences without approval:
Where an employee is absent from duty without approval, all pay and other benefits provided under this Agreement, eg flextime, will cease to be available until the employee resumes duty or is granted leave. Where flextime no longer applies, employees will revert to standard hours (as defined in this clause).
28.1 Where consistent with client service and other operational requirements, an employee may request the OAIC to approve home-based work on either an ongoing or temporary basis.
28.2 Guidelines for ongoing arrangements, including criteria for approval, security and OH&S requirements, will provide for a simple and cost-effective scheme that does not compromise excellence in service and confidentiality for clients and employees. Approval for an ongoing home-based work arrangement may be conditional upon an employee’s willingness to meet costs associated with necessary modifications to the home-based site.
28.3 Approval for home-based work shall be subject to client service and operational needs being met after consideration of the effect of the proposal on individual workloads and the work area as a whole.
28.4 A temporary arrangement may only be approved where it is agreed at the outset that it is for a short and fixed period only. The arrangement may only be approved where it can be implemented at minimal or no cost to the OAIC.
28.5 Any approval for remote access to the OAIC IT network at home or other locations is to be approved by the delegate and is subject to IT operational requirements.
28.6 Any ongoing or temporary arrangement may be terminated by the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate for cause (eg ineffectiveness of the arrangement, or failure of the employee to comply with requirements). Where the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate has decided to terminate an arrangement, the employee concerned shall be given reasonable notice of the termination.
28.7 Working from home is not a child care option and arrangements will not be approved where it is more appropriate for the employee to use personal leave or work part-time. However, an arrangement may be approved by the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate in exceptional circumstances, for an employee to work from home while suffering from an injury or having responsibility for another person who needs care.
29.1 The OAIC will provide assistance to employees, subject to meeting eligibility criteria, to purchase discounted annual public transport travel passes.
29.2 Employees will repay the cost over 12 months through fortnightly salary deductions from after-tax salary. Any balance owing on cessation of employment will be repaid to the OAIC from final monies in accordance with the OAIC Chief Executive Instructions.
29.3 This purchasing arrangement is subject to being provided on a cost-neutral basis and may be reviewed annually to evaluate any administrative impact and ensure compliance with any ATO rulings.
To provide an equitable work/life balance, the OAIC recognises that it is important for both the employee and the organisation for employees to access annual leave on a regular basis. Employees are encouraged to take their annual leave credits in the year when the credits accrue and are expected to take at least 2 weeks (or 50%) of those annual leave credits in the year when the credits accrue.
A full-time employee shall accrue 20 days paid annual leave per completed year of service. Annual leave will accrue on a fortnightly basis and may be accessed as it accrues.
30.3 Annual leave shall be taken at such a time or times and in such a period or periods as may be agreed between the employee and the employee’s supervisor. Annual Leave will not be prepaid.
30.4 Maximum leave credit
(i) To assist the OAIC to better manage its accrued leave liability the maximum annual leave credit an employee may accumulate is 6 weeks (inclusive of accrued and pro rata entitlements). Annual leave credits are not to be in excess of 6 weeks (or part-time equivalent) on 30 June of any year.
(ii) In December and March each year supervisors will notify those employees with a forecast excess leave credit as at 30 June that they are required to reduce their annual leave credit to 6 weeks by 30 June. The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may direct an employee with an excess leave credit to take annual leave to reduce their excess leave by 30 June.
(iii) The delegate may approve annual leave credits in excess of 6 weeks to be carried over in exceptional circumstances, subject to an agreed date whereby the excess credits will be utilised.
30.5 Cash out of leave:
(i) An employee who has accessed at least 15 days annual leave in any 12 month period and has an accrual of at least 5 further days annual leave may, at the request of the employee, be paid out 5 days annual leave in lieu of absence from the workplace. The delegate may approve further cash out if circumstances warrant approval and where the employee has accessed a reasonable amount of annual leave over the previous 12 months. Employees cashing out annual leave are required to maintain a balance of at least 4 weeks in accordance with the requirements of s 93 of the Fair Work Act 2009.
30.6 Absences less than one day:
Absences for a period below one day shall, where flextime arrangements apply and credits are available, be taken as flextime.
31.1 An employee may, with the approval of the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate, purchase from one to four additional weeks of annual leave.
31.2 The leave shall be purchased for the amount the employee would have received for the period of leave purchased, if he or she had taken ordinary annual leave for that period, as estimated at the time of applying for participation in the purchased leave scheme.
31.3 The purchase price of the leave shall be deducted from the fortnightly pay of the purchasing employee in equal instalments over the stipulated period prior to the leave being taken:
4 weeks purchased leave 26 pay periods
3 weeks purchased leave 20 pay periods
2 weeks purchased leave 13 pay periods
1 week purchased leave 7 pay periods
31.4 All such leave purchased shall be taken within a 12 month period from the commencing date of accrual or shall be forfeited and the purchase price of the leave refunded.
31.5 Purchased leave shall be taken in accordance with the rules applying to annual leave at Clause 30.
31.6 Approval for entry into the purchased leave scheme is subject to the operational requirements of the OAIC.
31.7 Purchased leave shall count as service for all purposes.
31.8 Entry into the purchased leave scheme shall not affect the superannuation obligations of the OAIC and/or the employee involved.
32.1 Employees will be eligible to apply for a 3 month unpaid career break scheme after they have been employed for 5 years and for a further 3 months unpaid for each subsequent 5 year period. The 3 month period is in calendar days and will be non-cumulative. All approvals will be subject to operational requirements and the negotiation of a mutually agreeable period of absence. Where it is of direct benefit to the work of the OAIC and the career development of the employee it will count as service.
33.1 Employees who have stated an intention to retire from the workforce within 2 years are able to participate in a retirement transition arrangement. Financial assistance of up to $500 will be provided for access to retirement seminars and/or superannuation and financial advice. Transition arrangements may vary between individuals as both individual and operational needs are considered, but may include access to part-time work (refer Clause 26 for part-time provisions) and/or changes in work level or responsibilities by agreement. Part-time work will be subject to the OAIC’s Part-time work policy.
34.1 Personal/carer’s leave may be taken only in the event of personal illness, the illness of a member of the employee’s family or household or an unexpected emergency. The OAIC recognises that caring arrangements may include supporting ill family members interstate or in hospital and caring for a family member where a primary carer is unable to do so.
(i) Ongoing employees: An employee shall be entitled to 16 days paid personal/carer’s leave upon engagement and shall accumulate a further 16 days paid personal/carer’s leave per completed year of service.
(ii) Non-ongoing employees: A non-ongoing employee shall accumulate one day paid personal/carer’s leave after one month employment and shall accumulate one day of paid personal/carer’s leave per further month of employment. An employee whose employment extends beyond 9 months will be entitled to the full 16 days personal leave. Leave will accrue on a pro rata basis and will not exceed the entitlement that would have occurred if the employee were an ongoing employee.
(iii) If a non-ongoing employee is then engaged on an ongoing basis, they shall be credited with a full entitlement to personal/carers leave as if they had accrued from the date of their commencement in the OAIC.
(iv) An employee in receipt of compensation for more than 45 weeks will accrue personal/carer’s leave on the basis of the hours actually worked.
(v) An employee will not be entitled to paid personal/carer’s leave while also entitled to paid leave under the Maternity Leave (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1973.
34.3 Medical certificates:
Medical certificates are to accompany any application for leave of 3 consecutive days or more.
(i) Where 16 days of personal/carer’s leave have been granted in any accrual year, any subsequent applications for personal/carer’s leave shall be accompanied by a medical certificate.
(ii) The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may request an employee to provide a medical certificate when any future absence on personal/carer’s leave occurs.
(iii) Re-credit: An employee who is medically unfit for one day or longer on annual leave or long service leave and who provides a medical certificate, may apply for personal/carer’s leave. Annual or long service leave will be re-credited to the extent of the period of personal leave granted.
An employee absent from the workplace on account of illness shall inform his or her immediate supervisor before the normal commencing time of work by an agreed method.
Any existing entitlements to half-pay sick leave shall be converted to full-pay personal/carer’s leave on a 2:1 ratio. An employee may access personal/carer’s leave on half-pay where personal circumstances require.
An employee will not, without the employee's consent, be retired on invalidity grounds before the employee's paid personal/carer’s leave credit has expired.
35.1 Two days, on each permissible occasion, may be granted for the purposes of spending time with a member of the employee’s family or household who has a personal illness or injury that is life threatening taken in accordance with s 105 of the NES.
35.2 Three days paid leave may be granted to an employee upon the death of a member of an employee’s immediate family or household per occasion in accordance with s 105 of the NES.
35.3 Casual employees are entitled to 2 days unpaid compassionate leave per occasion.
35.4 An employee may be required to provide evidence to support each application for compassionate or bereavement leave.
36.1 Employees covered by this Agreement are entitled to the provisions set down in the Maternity Leave Act (Commonwealth Employees) 1973 (Maternity Leave Act).
36.2 Access to paid maternity leave is subject to a qualifying period of 12 months continuous employment as specified in the Maternity Leave Act.
36.3 Under the Maternity Leave Act eligible employees may access up to 12 weeks paid leave, inclusive of public holidays. An employee who is on a period of paid or unpaid maternity leave under the Maternity Leave Act will also have access to a further 4 weeks paid leave to be taken in conjunction with maternity leave. In total, 16 weeks paid leave may be accessed for maternity leave purposes.
36.4 Under the Maternity Leave Act eligible employees may access a period of up to 52 weeks, including approved paid and unpaid leave. An employee may request in writing to return to work during this period on a date earlier than previously approved. The granting of such a request will be at the discretion of the delegate in accordance with s 7A of the Maternity Leave Act. Employees resuming duty full time following their period of maternity leave will return to the position they held prior to their maternity leave or, if the position no longer exists, a position that is nearest in status and remuneration. Any request to resume work on part-time basis will be in writing and in accordance with Clause 26.4 (part time) of this Agreement.
36.5 An employee who is pregnant is required to absent herself from duty 6 weeks before the expected date of confinement until 6 weeks after the actual date of birth of the child, unless a medical certificate is provided declaring her fit to either continue or return to duty.
36.6 Periods of paid leave during maternity leave will count as service for all purposes.
36.7 In order to provide a more flexible administration of maternity leave an employee may elect to receive payment for their maternity leave (including the additional 4 weeks leave under Clause 36.3) at half pay. Only the equivalent full-pay period will count as service.
37.1 Primary carer’s leave:
(i) An employee who is not covered by the maternity leave provision but has the same qualifying period of service as per an employee under Clause 36.2, and who has primary parental responsibility caring for a newborn or recently adopted child, is entitled to 16 weeks paid primary carer’s leave from the birth, adoption or fostering of the child.
(ii) Up to 2 weeks of this paid leave can be taken by the employee, prior to the date of adoption or fostering, to assist in finalising administrative arrangements.
(iii) An employee accessing primary carer’s leave may request a period or periods of up to 52 weeks, including paid and unpaid leave. Employees resuming full-time duty following their period of approved leave will return to their previously held position, or if that position no longer exists, a position that is nearest in status and remuneration. Any request to resume work on a part-time basis will be in writing and in accordance with Clause 26 of this Agreement.
(iv) Periods of paid leave under this clause will count as service for all purposes. Paid leave may be accessed at half pay. Only the equivalent full pay period will count as service.
(v) The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may request reasonable proof in support of an application, which may include a statutory declaration.
(vi) Where both partners are employed by the OAIC and one partner has accessed, or intends to access, paid maternity or primary carer’s leave; the other partner may only access primary carer’s leave on a non-concurrent basis and so that the combined period of paid leave does not exceed 18 weeks.
37.2 Flexible work arrangements for parents:
(i) An employee who is a parent, or has responsibility for the care of a child under school age or a child under 18 who has a disability, may request flexible working arrangements, including part-time hours. The employee is not eligible to make this request unless they have completed at least 12 months of continuous qualifying service the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may waive this requirement in exceptional circumstances).
(ii) A casual employee engaged for irregular or intermittent duties may only request flexible work arrangements if the employee:
- is a long term casual employee immediately before making the request; and
- has reasonable expectation of continuing employment on a regular and systematic basis.
Note: ‘long term casual employee’ is defined at s 12 of the Fair Work Act 2009
(iv) A request made in accordance with Clause 37.2(i) must be in writing and set out details of the change sought and the reasons for the change. The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate will respond in writing to the request within 21 days and will only refuse on reasonable business grounds. Where the request is refused, the response will include reasons for the refusal.
(v) For the purposes of this clause:
- ‘qualifying service’ means service that is recognised for redundancy pay purposes;
- ‘casual’ means an employee engaged on a irregular or intermittent basis.
37.3 Supporting parent leave:
(i) Six weeks paid supporting parent leave will be granted to an employee following the birth, adoption or long-term fostering of a child.
(ii) The OAIC recognises that a parent may include a person who is in a demonstrated parental relationship to the child. The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may request reasonable proof in support of an application, which may include a statutory declaration.
(iii) This period of supporting parent leave will count as service and may be taken in one block or, subject to operational requirements, as part of a flexible work arrangement within 12 months of the birth, adoption or fostering of the child.
(iv) This leave is not available to employees covered by paid Maternity or Primary carers leave provisions.
(v) Paid leave may be accessed at half pay. Only the equivalent full-pay period will count as service.
37.4 Where both parents are employees, the combined maximum period of leave without pay for both maternity and parental leave, including primary and supporting parent leave will not exceed 66 weeks from the date of birth or adoption of the child. Unpaid leave will not count as service.
38.1 An employee may request additional unpaid leave up to a further 52 weeks following their maternity leave or parental leave where they are the primary carer. This leave will not count as service.
38.2 For operational planning purposes requests for this additional leave should be made, where possible, at the commencement of the maternity or parental leave period. Otherwise, employees requesting additional leave under this clause are to provide at least 4 weeks notice of their request.
38.3 An employee may request in writing to return to work during this period on a date earlier than previously approved. The granting of such a request will be at the discretion of the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate and subject to 4 weeks notice for planning purposes.
38.4 Employees resuming duty after this period of leave will return to the same classification level they held prior to their maternity or parental leave. Any request to resume work on part-time basis will be in writing and in accordance with Clause 26 of this Agreement.
39.1 An employee is entitled to paid leave to attend jury service. An employee will continue to be paid by the OAIC in lieu of any other payment for jury service. An employee shall be required to pay to the OAIC the amount received for jury service except payments relating to meals, accommodation or fares in accordance with the OAIC Chief Executive Instructions.
40.1 Miscellaneous leave with pay may be granted by the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate in, but not limited to, the following circumstances:
(i) study leave under the OAIC’s Guidelines on studies assistance
(ii) Defence Force Reservist training requirements, as per Defence Support Council advice
(iii) A day for National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee Week
(iv) war service sick leave
(v) participation in emergency services responses
(vi) special leave of one day per year to assist employees in moving house
(vii) workplace relations training leave to assist an employee to carry out a role recognised under this Agreement. Any training costs will be paid by the OAIC.
(viii) one day for the purpose of attending the funeral of a person with a relationship to the employee other than is covered by Clause 35.
40.2 The OAIC will provide unpaid leave for community service personnel for emergency services duties encompassing leave for regular training, reasonable recovery time and ceremonial duties.
40.3 Employees may apply for leave without pay in accordance with the OAIC’s Policy on leave without pay, in but not limited to, the following circumstances. Applications will be considered subject to the operational requirements of the OAIC and equity with other employees.
(i) for other purposes where paid leave has been exhausted, particularly for compassionate and family/personal reasons
(ii) approved full-time study commitments
(iii) work in other Commonwealth agencies
(iv) days of cultural, ceremonial and NAIDOC significance
(v) days of cultural or religious significance
40.4 Community volunteering:
The OAIC will support community volunteer leave of one day paid per calendar year for employees to undertake voluntary work for a not-for-profit community organisation. The timing of the leave must be approved by the supervisor. Additional unpaid leave of up to 4 days per calendar year may be approved based on operational requirements. Employees will be required to provide appropriate evidence to support leave applications.
40.5 Elder and disabled care leave:
An employee with 12 months of continuing service may request unpaid discretionary leave of up to 12 months to provide care or support to:
- an elderly parent
- a disabled child over 18 years old, where the parent or child requires ongoing care or support.
40.6 The employee’s request must be in writing and set out the period of leave being sought and the reasons for the leave. The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may refuse an employee request under this clause on reasonable business grounds and must provide in writing within 21 days the reasons for any refusal of the request. Refer to Clauses 36–38 for flexible working arrangements following maternity or parental leave and Clause 26 of this Agreement for part-time work requests.
41.1 Employees covered by this Agreement are entitled to the provisions set down in the Long Service Leave (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1976.
41.2 Under the Act, employees are generally entitled to 3 months long service leave on full pay after 10 years qualifying service with a rate of accrual of 3/10 month per year of service.
41.3 Long service leave may be taken on half pay in accordance with the Long Service Leave (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1976.
41.4 Part-time and casual employees accrue long service leave on a pro rata basis in accordance with the Long Service Leave (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1976.
41.5 Long service is to be utilised on a calendar day basis and the minimum amount of long service leave that can be taken is 7 calendar days.
42.1 Where an employee moves (including on promotion or for an agreed period) to the OAIC from an employer staffed under the Public Service Act, the Parliamentary Service Act 1999 or from the ACT Government Service, accrued annual leave and personal/carer’s leave (however described) will be transferred, provided that there is no break in continuity of service. Future entitlements to annual and personal/carer’s leave will be those prevailing in the OAIC.
43.1 Public holidays
Employees will be entitled to the following public holidays:
- New Year's Day (1 January)
- Australia Day (26 January)
- Good Friday
- Easter Monday
- Anzac Day (25 April)
- Queen's birthday holiday (on the day on which it is celebrated in a State or Territory or a region of a State or Territory)
- Christmas Day (25 December)
- Boxing Day (26 December)
- any other day, or part-day, declared or prescribed by or under a law of a State or Territory to be observed generally within the State or Territory, or a region of the State or Territory, as a public holiday, other than a day or part-day, or a kind of day or part-day, that is excluded by the Fair Work regulations from counting as a public holiday.
43.2 If under a state or territory law, a day or part day is substituted for one of the public holidays listed above, then the substituted day or part day is the public holiday.
43.3 The Australian Information Commissioner and an employee may agree on the substitution of a day or part day that would otherwise be a public holiday, having regard to operational requirements.
43.4 An employee, who is absent on a day or part-day that is a public holiday in the place where the employee is based for work purposes, is entitled to be paid for the part or full day absence as if that day or part-day was not a public holiday, except where that person would not normally have worked on that day.
43.5 Where a public holiday falls during a period when an employee is absent on leave (other than Annual or paid Personal/carers leave) there is no entitlement to receive payment as a public holiday. Payment for that day would be in accordance with the entitlement for that form of leave (eg if on long service leave on half pay, payment is on half pay).
44.1 The OAIC will close its normal operations from close of business on the last working day before Christmas, with business resuming on the first working day after New Year’s Day.
44.2 Employees will be provided with time off for the working days between Christmas and New Year’s Day and will be paid in accordance with their ordinary hours of work. Where an employee is absent on leave, payment for the Christmas closedown provision will be in accordance with the entitlement for that form of leave, (e.g. if on long service leave half pay, payment is on half pay).
44.3 There will be no deduction from Annual or Personal/carer’s leave credits for the closedown days.
The legislative basis for certain action relating to the management of excess employees may be found in the Public Service Act, specifically:
- s 23, relating to reducing an employee’s classification
- s 25, assignment of duties
- s 27, the Public Service Commissioner’s power to move an excess employee to another agency
- s 29, termination of employment.
45.2 Excess employee:
(i) The procedure for handling excess employees set out below applies to all employees except:
a. an ongoing employee who is on probation
b. a non-ongoing employee.
(ii) When the OAIC is aware that an employee is likely to become excess, the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate will advise the employee of the situation at the earliest practicable time. An employee is an excess employee if:
a. the OAIC has a greater number of employees than is necessary for the effective performance of a particular role or function within the OAIC
b. the services of the employee cannot be effectively used because of technological or other changes in the work methods of the OAIC or changes in the nature, extent or organisation of the functions of the OAIC
c. where the duties usually performed by the employee are to be performed at a different locality, the employee is not willing to perform duties at the locality and the OAIC has determined that the provisions of this clause will apply to that employee.
45.3 Consultation process:
(i) The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate will hold discussions with an excess employee to consider:
a. measures that could be taken to resolve the situation, including redeployment opportunities for the employee, at or below level, within or outside the OAIC
b. whether termination of employment (voluntary redundancy) might be appropriate
c. where the employee chooses a representative, the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate will hold the discussions with the employee's representative
d. where 15 or more employees are likely to become excess the OAIC will comply with the provisions of the Fair Work Act 2009.
(ii) The maximum period of time allowed for consultations should be one month (4 weeks) unless a lesser period is agreed to.
45.4 Early separation:
(i) Where an employee is likely to be the subject of action under these provisions, the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may provide to that employee an early separation opportunity.
(ii) This option provides for separation to occur within 14 days of the employee being advised that they are excess under Clause 45.2.
(iii) It attracts an additional payment of 8 weeks salary (or 10 weeks for an employee over 45 years of age with at least 5 years continuous service), over and above any other amount paid on separation in accordance with Clause 45.6.
(iv) The payment is in lieu of the time that may have reasonably been expected to elapse for the purposes of the consultation, consideration periods and notice periods.
45.5 Separation with consent
(i) Where an employee is advised in writing that they are excess and that it is proposed to terminate the employee in accordance with s 29 of the Public Service Act, the employee will have a maximum period of one month to consider their position and provide their consent to the termination of their employment or request redeployment assistance.
(ii) The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate will not give an employee notice of termination of their employment under s 29 of the Public Service Act until the expiration of that one-month period (unless the employee requests an earlier termination of employment date within that one-month period).
(iii) Within that month, unless agreed otherwise, an employee consenting to termination of employment must be given all the relevant financial information, including:
a. amount of redundancy pay, pay in lieu of notice and cashable leave credits
b. amount of accumulated superannuation contributions
c. options open to the employee concerning superannuation
d. taxation rules applying to the various payments
e. assistance up to a maximum of $800 for financial advice and career counselling, reimbursed on production of receipts
(iv) The employee is only entitled to receive one offer of voluntary retirement.
45.6 Redundancy benefit:
Where the provisions of this clause provide for less than the National Employment Standards (NES), the NES will prevail.
(i) An excess employee who agrees to be voluntarily retrenched and whose employment is terminated by the delegate under s 29 of the Public Service Act on the grounds that he/she is excess to requirements is entitled to be paid a sum equal to two weeks salary for each completed year of continuous service, plus a pro rata payment for completed months of service since the last completed year of service, subject to any minimum amount the employee is entitled to under the NES.
(ii) The minimum sum payable will be 4 weeks salary and the maximum will be 48 weeks salary.
(iii) The redundancy benefit will be calculated on a pro rata basis for any period where an employee has worked part-time hours during their period of service and the employee has less than 24 years full-time service.
(iv) For the purpose of calculating payment, salary will include:
a. the employee’s salary
b. the salary including higher duties, where the employee has been receiving higher duties allowance for a continuous period of at least 12 months immediately preceding the date on which the employee is given notice of termination of employment
c. other allowances in the nature of salary which are paid during periods of annual leave and on a regular basis, excluding allowances which are a reimbursement for expenses incurred, or a payment for disabilities associated with the performance of duty.
45.7 Period of notice:
(i) Where the excess employee agrees to be voluntarily retrenched the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may terminate the employment of the employee by giving the required notice of termination of employment under s 29 of the Public Service Act. The period of notice will be 4 weeks (or 5 weeks for an employee over 45 years of age with at least 5 years of continuous service).
(ii) Where an employee whose employment is terminated at the beginning of or within the notice period, the employee will receive payment in lieu of notice for the unexpired portion of the notice period. This amount is additional to any redundancy benefit payment.
45.8 Periods of service:
(i) For earlier periods of service to count there must be no breaks between the periods of service, except where:
a. the break in service is less than one month and occurs where an offer of employment with the new employer was made and accepted by the employee before ceasing employment with the preceding employer
b. the earlier period of service was with the APS and ceased because the employee was deemed to have resigned from the APS on marriage under the then s 49 (as repealed in 1966) of the repealed Public Service Act 1922
(ii) Subject to Clause 45.8(a) service for redundancy pay purposes means:
a. service with the OAIC
b. Government service as defined in s 10 of the Long Service Leave Act 1976
c. service with the Commonwealth (other than service with a joint Commonwealth-State body corporate in which the Commonwealth has a controlling interest) which is recognised for long service leave purposes
d. service with the Australian Defence Forces
e. APS service immediately preceding deemed resignation under the then s 49 (as repealed in 1966) of the repealed Public Service Act 1922, if the service has not previously been recognised for severance pay purposes; and
f. service in another organisation where an employee was transferred from the APS to that organisation with a transfer of function, or an employee engaged by that organisation on work within a function, is appointed as a result of the transfer of that function to the APS and such service is recognised for long service leave purposes. (Note: transfer means the movement to a new agency under the Public Service Act).
(iii) Any period or service which ceased through termination of employment on the following grounds will not count as service for redundancy pay purposes:
a. the employee lacks, or has lost an essential qualification for performing his or her duties
b. non-performance, or unsatisfactory performance of duties
c. inability to perform duties because of physical or mental incapacity
d. failure to satisfactorily complete an entry level training course
e. failure to meet a condition imposed under sub-section 22(6) of the Public Service Act, including probation
f. a breach of the Code of Conduct
g. for a reason equivalent to a reason listed above at Clause 45.8 (ii)(a) to (f) under the repealed Public Service Act 1922
h. any other ground prescribed by the Public Service Regulations
i. through voluntary retrenchment at or above the minimum retiring age applicable to the employee
j. payment of a redundancy benefit or similar payment or an employer financed retirement benefit.
(iv) Absences from work which do not count as service for long service leave purposes will not count as service for severance pay purposes.
This clause is intended to provide an employee with far more intensive and immediate redeployment assistance.
(i) The OAIC will assist employees throughout the redeployment process by providing reasonable expenses and time off to attend necessary employment interviews where the costs are not met by the prospective employer.
(ii) If an excess employee wishes to be redeployed rather than consent to termination of employment, the OAIC will take all reasonable steps, consistent with the efficient management of the OAIC, to assign duties to that employee in accordance with s 25 of the Public Service Act.
(iii) In the first instance, this placement will be handled within the OAIC.
(iv) The OAIC may also choose to offer the services of a selected outplacement/career management provider at any point in the process (on and from the point the employee is advised that they are likely to become excess).
(v) The OAIC will give excess employees the option of seeking redeployment in the APS in accordance with APS redeployment policy.
(vi) The redeployment process commences from the date the employee is advised, in writing, that they are an excess employee.
(vii) Where the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate is satisfied that there is insufficient productive work available for the employee within the OAIC during the remainder of his or her redeployment period, the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may, with the agreement of the employee, terminate the employee’s employment under s 29 of the Public Service Act and pay an agreed lump sum not greater than the salary which would be payable for the balance of the redeployment period.
(viii) If redeployment has not proven to be a successful option, an employee can consent to termination at the end of the first 2 month period, in preference to continuing redeployment action. If an employee consents to termination of employment at this point and this employment is terminated by the OAIC under s 29 of the Public Service Act on the grounds he/she is excess to requirements, they will be eligible to receive the full redundancy benefit as specified at Clause 45.6(i) and 45.6(ii).
45.10 Salary maintenance:
Where the OAIC reduces the classification of an employee under s 23 of the Public Service Act, salary maintenance will be applied from the date of reduction in classification for a period of 6 months. Salary maintenance will be calculated on the basis of the employee’s regular and ongoing salary.
45.11 Involuntary termination of employment:
(i) If after 3 months from the date an employee has been identified as an excess employee:
a. the OAIC has been unable to assign duties to the employee (at or below level) despite having taken all reasonable steps to do so
b. the employee has not consented to termination of employment
the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may decide to involuntarily terminate the employment of the excess employee under s 29 of the Public Service Act.
(ii) An excess employee cannot have their employment terminated involuntarily unless they have rejected the opportunity to provide their consent to their termination of employment.
(iii) employees whose employment has been terminated involuntarily by the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate under s 29 of the Public Service Act will receive the same entitlements on termination as employees who consent to termination of employment except that the redundancy benefit will be reduced to account for salary payments received during the redeployment period. The reduction in the amount of the redundancy benefit cannot be more than half the amount the employee would have received if they had provided their consent to termination of their employment subject to any minimum amount the employee is entitled to under the NES.
(iv) If an employee is entitled to a redundancy period under the NES, the redeployment/retention period at Clause 45.11(i) will be reduced by the employees’ redundancy pay entitlement under the NES on termination, calculated as at the expiration of the retention period (as adjusted by this clause).
46.1 Where an employee has died or the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate has directed that an employee will be presumed to have died on a particular date, the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may authorise the payment of the amount to which the employee would have been entitled had the employee ceased employment through resignation or retirement. Payment may be made to dependants or the partner of the employee or the employee’s legal personal representative. If a payment has not been made within 12 months of the employee’s death, it shall be paid forthwith to the legal personal representative. Long service leave credits will be paid out in accordance with the Long Service Leave Act (Commonwealth Employees) 1976.
47.1 Where an employee is absent from duty without permission for more than 21 calendar days, they will be considered to have abandoned their employment unless they can prove to the satisfaction of the OAIC that the absence was, in all the circumstances, warranted. Where an employee is unable to substantiate that their absence from duty is or was warranted, their employment may be terminated under s 29 of the Public Service Act, subject to Part 3-2 of the Fair Work Act, on the ground of ‘non-performance of duties’.
48.1 Notice periods:
The OAIC expects that employees would provide reasonable notice of their intention to resign. This notice period should be a minimum of 2 weeks where possible.
49.1 The parties to this Agreement are committed to effective cooperation between the OAIC and its employees on occupational health and safety (OH&S) matters. The OAIC and its employees aim to create and maintain a safe working environment and to fulfil their requirements under the Occupational Health and Safety (Commonwealth Employment) Act 1991 (OH&S Act).
49.2 Employer responsibilities:
The OAIC recognises that it has a legal responsibility to provide a healthy and safe work place and work methods. To meet its obligations under the OH&S Act, the OAIC will:
(i) hold all levels of management responsible and accountable for the health, safety and rehabilitation matters in the areas under their control
(ii) develop and maintain health, safety and welfare policies that are consistent with the OH&S Act and Regulations, the OAICOH&S policy and the OAIC Harassment policy
(iii) facilitate and support the activities of Health and Safety Representatives and Harassment Contact Officers
(iv) provide funds and paid leave for Health and Safety Representatives to attend training courses accredited in accordance with sub-section 27(1) of the OH&S Act
(v) as appropriate, ensure that expert advice is available on OH&S matters affecting employers, employees and contractors
(vi) provide ongoing education for employees on the basic principles of OH&S and their rights, responsibilities and obligations under the OH&S Act
(vii) place the safety of employees and the public ahead of the protection of equipment and services
(viii) provide and maintain safe plant, equipment and systems of work including safe storage and handling of substances
(ix) consult with employees and where they choose, their representatives about OH&S issues.
49.3 Employee responsibilities:
At work employees must take all reasonable practicable steps to ensure that they:
(i) do not risk their own health and safety, or that of any other person — whether an employee or not
(ii) cooperate with the OAIC to allow the OAIC to meet its duties as an employer under the OH&S Act
(iii) use the safety equipment provided to them by the OAIC in accordance with any instructions about its safe and proper use.
49.4 Under the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988, the OAIC has an ongoing responsibility to manage workers' compensation claims and provide rehabilitation and return to work programs for injured employees. Supervisors and colleagues of injured employees will cooperate with case managers to provide the necessary work environment and duties to enable employees to achieve the objectives set down in their rehabilitation plan.
a. Supporting eye health:
(i) The OAIC will reimburse employees for attendance at standard eye examinations for screen based equipment, for any portion of the fee not covered by Medicare. Appointments may be made every 2 years or as otherwise approved.
(ii) In addition, where an employee requires new spectacles/lenses as the result of such appointment, the OAIC offers financial support for the cost of spectacles/lenses for any portion not covered by private health insurance up to the following amounts:
- $80 for single
- $140 for bifocal or multifocal
49.5 Annual influenza vaccinations:
The OAIC will provide annual influenza injections for interested employees.
50.1 The OAIC provides employees and their families with access to a confidential, professional counselling service to help them resolve either personal or work related problems. On commencement, employees will be advised of the availability of the employment assistance program (EAP) service.
50.2 There will be no initial cost to employees who contact the counselling service, however if the counselling service refers the employee to another service, or agrees to provide services in addition to those under contract to the OAIC, then the employee will be responsible for any costs which may arise.
50.3 Supervisors may access the service to support them in their roles and should encourage employees to use the service where appropriate.
51.1 The OAIC encourages its employees to consider healthy lifestyle activities as a means to develop and maintain work and life balance. In addition, financial support of up to $250 per financial year will be available to reimburse employees who undertake approved activities. The supported activities will have an emphasis on promoting health and wellbeing and be approved in accordance with the Healthy lifestyle guidelines.
52.1 An employee may seek a review of actions under s 33 of the Public Service Act.
(i) The sole and exhaustive rights and remedies of an employee in relation to termination of employment are those that the employee has under:
a. the Fair Work Act 2009
b. other Commonwealth laws (including the Constitution)
c. at common law.
(ii) Termination of, or a decision to terminate employment, cannot be reviewed under Procedures for dealing with disputes (Clause 9) or procedures for the Review of employment decisions (Clause 52.1) of this Agreement.
(iii) Nothing in this Agreement prevents the OAIC from terminating the employment of an employee for serious misconduct, without further notice or payment in lieu, in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Fair Work Act 2009, subject to compliance with the procedures established by the OAIC for determining whether an employee has breached the Code of Conduct under s 15 of the Public Service Act.
52.3 Unsatisfactory performance of duties (underperformance):
Where an employee is aggrieved about an action or decision related to the unsatisfactory performance of their duties, these matters will be addressed with the provisions at Clause 17 of this Agreement and, if necessary, under sub-Clause 52.2 above.
53.1 An allowance of $30 per fortnight will be paid to an employee who is appointed to undertake one or more of the following roles:
- First Aid Officer (requires current Senior First Aid Certificate or equivalent)
- Health and Safety Representative
- Fire Warden
- Harassment Contact Officer.
53.2 Payment of the allowance will cease for continuous absences of over 4 weeks.
53.3 Each role has inherent training requirements which must be successfully met as a condition of receiving the allowance.
53.4 Where employees accept more than one of these roles, they will only be entitled to a single allowance.
54.1 Where the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate considers that it will result in greater efficiency or involve less expense, he or she may authorise an employee to use a private motor vehicle owned or hired by that employee at their own expense for official purposes.
54.2 Motor vehicle allowance will be payable in accordance with the ATO Reasonable Allowance Rates, as varied from time to time.
55.1 A travelling allowance shall be payable to an employee who undertakes travel on official business and is required to be absent overnight.
55.2 Travelling allowances are in addition to the cost of conveyance.
55.3 An employee who is travelling to a place of work in anticipation of a permanent move to that place of work, and who has been advised in writing that the move is to be made permanent, will not be eligible to receive travelling allowance during employment at that place of work.
55.4 Travelling allowance rates:
(i) An employee who is required to be absent overnight from the employee’s usual place of work on official business, under Clause 55.4 will be paid, prior to undertaking the travel, in accordance with the ATO Rulings on Reasonable Daily Travel Allowance amounts (equivalent non-SES rates).
(ii) Private non-commercial rate:
Where commercial accommodation is not required the employee is not eligible to receive a payment under Clause 55.4(i). The employee will be eligible to receive a payment for every overnight absence in accordance with ATO rulings for reasonable daily travel allowance (equivalent non-SES) amounts for meals and incidentals (for capital cities) published annually.
55.5 Reviewed travelling allowance:
After an employee has resided in the one locality for a period of 21 days, the employee will be paid an allowance equal to the amount actually expended on accommodation, meals and incidentals, or an amount which the OAIC considers to be reasonable in the circumstances.
55.6 Part day travelling allowance:
It is recognised that employees may be required to be absent for more than a standard day when travelling to attend meetings in regional areas or interstate. To compensate an employee for time spent travelling and additional costs, an employee who is required to be absent from the employee’s usual place of work on official business for a period of not less than 10 hours, but is not absent overnight, may be paid $80. Supervisors may agree to reasonable compensatory time off or include as flexleave in recognition of any additional time spent travelling outside normal working hours when the period of travel is less than 10 hours. The employee's normal travelling time would be taken into account when considering this.
55.7 Approval of additional expenses:
Where proof is provided to the satisfaction of the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate that the allowance payable to an employee under 55.1, 55.4 and 55.6 is insufficient to cover expenses which have been, or may be, incurred, the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate may direct payment as is necessary to meet those expenses.
55.8 Repayment when travel not undertaken:
An employee who fails to undertake the anticipated travel, or who undertakes the travel for a lesser period than anticipated, will repay either the full travel allowance, or the difference between the allowance paid and the amount that would have been payable for the actual absence in accordance with the OAIC Chief Executive Instructions.
55.9 Accommodation/meals provided by the Commonwealth:
Where an employee is provided with either accommodation or adequate meals, or both, at Commonwealth expense:
(i) the employee will not be paid those components of the allowance under Clause 55.1 in respect of any accommodation or meals provided, and
(ii) payment will be made in respect of incidental expenses during the period as the delegate directs.
55.10 Where an employee who is absent on duty from the employee’s usual place of work takes personal/carer’s leave for a condition for which the employee is not at fault and is unable to return home, the employee is entitled to be reimbursed an amount equal to the costs incurred by the employee up to the amount that would be payable under Clause 55.1.
55.11 Reimbursement for carer’s costs:
Where an employee is required to travel for the purpose of official duty away from his or her usual place of work the employee will, subject to prior approval of the arrangements and the cost, be entitled to be reimbursed for any additional costs associated with additional care arrangements.
55.12 Overseas travel:
(i) An employee required to travel on official business overseas will be provided with a recoverable cash advance to meet reasonable accommodation, meal and incidental expenses. The cash advance will be administered on a case-by-case basis having regard to the costs associated with the country being visited. The rates in accordance with the ATO Rulings will be used as a basis for determining reasonable expenses.
(ii) An employee will be required to comply with the conditions for overseas travel set out in the OAIC’s travel diary and acquit any payments.
56.1 An employee is entitled to economy class where required to travel on official business within Australia.
56.2 An employee is entitled to business class where required to travel on official business overseas.
57.1 The OAIC may determine the extent of any financial assistance for relocation from one locality to another upon promotion, engagement, movement of an employee or where an employee is assigned duties at or below level.
58.1 The OAIC may approve reimbursement to an employee for loss or damage to clothing or personal effects which occurred in the course of the employee’s work.
‘Consultation’ means the sharing of information and the provision of a genuine opportunity for employees and their representatives to put their views to the appropriate decision maker and for those views to be considered before a final decision is made.
Consultation in the OAIC takes place on the basis of the following principles:
- the OAIC Executive are responsible for making business decisions that affect the OAIC’s outcomes and future
- the Executive and Directors are accountable for delivering business outcomes and have the authority to make relevant decisions
- employees should be consulted about matters that affect them
- employees have the right to have their views presented through their chosen representative, including union representatives.
OAIC consultation forum
The parties agree to establish an OAIC consultation forum (OCF). The OCF will provide a forum for consultation between the OAIC, employees and their representatives and will meet twice yearly to consider:
- issues relating to the implementation of this Agreement
- policies and guidelines relating to working arrangements
- overall corporate direction, including budget
- other standing agenda items to be determined.
The parties will commence discussions with a view to establishing the OCF and determining membership and will conduct the first meeting of the OCF within 6 months of the commencement of this Agreement.
The OCF will meet every 6 months on dates set in advance. In exceptional circumstances, extra meetings may be convened.
The OCF will operate in accordance with Terms of Reference to be developed at its first meeting.
In OAIC workplaces the following principles will guide day to day consultation:
- workplace issues should be discussed in a spirit of cooperation and trust
- employees should receive information on issues that significantly affect them
- Directors and supervisors are accountable for their areas, but wherever practicable employees should have the opportunity to contribute their views before decisions that significantly affect them are implemented.
The parties recognise that workplace change is a fact of life. Changes, even small ones, even under supposedly ‘ideal’ circumstances, can be difficult to cope with.
In addition to the establishment of the OCF and the principles of workplace consultation, the OAIC will ensure that workplace change is managed in accordance with the following principles:
- openness – employees will be given relevant information about the reasons for the proposed change
- communication – information about change will be communicated in a sensitive , thoughtful and flexible manner
- feedback channels – employees will be able to provide feedback on change processes through a variety of channels, including the OCF
- timing – staff will be consulted early and often throughout the change process unless exceptional circumstances apply
- consideration – when employees are invited to give feedback their views will be considered.
Consultation on major changes
Where a definite decision is made to introduce major changes in program, organisation, structure or technology that are likely to have significant effects on employees, the Australian Information Commissioner or delegate will notify the employees who are likely to be affected by the proposed changes and their representatives, if any.
Significant effects include:
- termination of employment
- major changes in the composition, operation or size of the OAIC’s workforce or in the skills required
- the elimination or diminution of job opportunities, promotion opportunities or job tenure
- significant alteration in hours of work
- the need to retrain employees
- the need to relocate employees to another workplace
- the major restructuring of jobs.
The Australian Information Commissioner or delegate will discuss with the employees affected and their representatives, if any, the introduction of the changes referred to above, the effects the changes are likely to have on employees and measures to avert or mitigate the adverse effects of such changes on employees and must give prompt consideration to matters raised by the employees and/or their representatives in relation to the changes.
The discussions must commence as early as practicable after a definite decision has been made to make the changes above.
For the purposes of such discussion, the employees concerned and their representatives, if any, will be provided in writing all relevant information about the changes including the nature of the changes proposed, the expected effects of the changes on employees and any other matters likely to affect employees. The Australian Information Commissioner is not required to disclose confidential or commercially sensitive information to the employees.
The role of union workplace delegates and other elected union representatives is to be respected and facilitated.
The OAIC and union workplace delegates must deal with each other in good faith.
In discharging their representative roles at the workplace level, the rights of union workplace delegates include but are not limited to:
- the right to be treated fairly and to perform their role as workplace delegates without any discrimination in their employment
- recognition by the OAIC that endorsed workplace delegates speak on behalf of their members in the workplace
- the right to participate in collective bargaining on behalf of those who they represent, as per the Fair Work Act
- the right to reasonable paid time to provide information to and seek feedback from employees in the workplace on workplace relations matters at the OAIC during normal working hours
- the right to email employees in their workplace to provide information and seek feedback, subject to individual employees exercising a right to ‘opt out’
- undertaking their role and having union representation on the OAIC’s workplace relations consultative committee
- reasonable access to OAIC facilities (including telephone, facsimile, photocopying, internet and email facilities, meeting rooms, lunch rooms, tea rooms and other areas where employees meet) for the purpose of carrying out work as a delegate and consulting with members and other interested employees and the union, subject to OAIC’s policies and protocols
- the right to address new employees about union membership at the time they enter employment
- the right to consultation and access to relevant information about the workplace and the OAIC
the right to reasonable paid time to represent the interests of members to the employer and industrial tribunals In discharging any roles that may involve undertaking union business, the rights of union workplace delegates include but are not limited to:
- reasonable paid time during normal working hours to consult with other delegates and union officials in the workplace, and receive advice and assistance from union staff and officials in the workplace
- reasonable access to appropriate training in workplace relations matters including training provided by a union
- reasonable paid time-off to represent union members in the OAIC at relevant union forums.
In exercising their rights, workplace delegates and unions will consider operational issues, OAIC policies and guidelines and the likely effect on the efficient operation of the OAIC and the provision of services by the Commonwealth.
For the avoidance of doubt, elected union representatives include APS employees elected to represent union members in representative forums, including, for example, CPSU Section Secretaries, Governing Councillors and Section Councillors, and APESMA Government Division Committee members.
7 days after approval by Fair Work Australia or 1 July 2011, whichever is the later
1 July 2012
1 July 2013
3% + adjustment for 5th percentile
Executive 1 (EL1)
Executive 2 (EL2)
Junior rates of pay as a percentage of the APS Level 1 classification component shall apply as follows:
- under 18 years of age – 60%
- at 18 years of age – 70%
- at 19 years of age – 81%
- at 20 years of age – 91%
1. Employees eligible for a supported wage
1.1 This Appendix defines the conditions which will apply to employees who, because of the effects of a disability, are eligible for a supported wage. In the context of this appendix, the following definitions will apply:
‘Supported Wage System’ means the Commonwealth Government system to promote employment for people who cannot work at full salary because of a disability, as documented in the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations Supported Wage System Handbook.
‘Approved assessor’ means a person accredited by the management unit established by the Commonwealth under the Supported Wage System to perform assessments of an individual's productive capacity within the Supported Wage System.
‘Disability support pension’ means the Commonwealth Government pension scheme to provide income security for persons with a disability as provided for under the Social Security Act 1991 (Cth), as amended from time to time, or any successor to that scheme.
‘Assessment instrument’ means the tool provided for under the Supported Wage System that records the assessment of the productive capacity of the person to be employed under the Supported Wage System.
2. Eligibility criteria
2.1 Employees covered by this appendix will be those who are unable to perform the range of duties to the competence level required within the class of work for which the employee is engaged, because of the effects of a disability on their productive capacity and who meet the impairment criteria for receipt of a disability support pension.
2.2 This appendix does not apply to any existing employee who has a claim against the employer which is subject to the provisions of workers' compensation legislation or any provision of this Agreement relating to the rehabilitation of employees who are injured in the course of their employment.
3. Supported wage rates
3.1 Employees to whom this appendix applies shall be paid the applicable percentage of the relevant salary rates under this Agreement, according to the following schedule:
% of relevant salary rate
4. Assessment of capacity
4.1 For the purpose of establishing the percentage of the relevant salary rate to be paid to an employee under this Agreement, the productive capacity of the employee will be assessed in accordance with the Supported Wage System by an approved assessor and documented in an assessment instrument.
5. Lodgement of assessment instrument
5.1 All assessment instruments under the conditions of this appendix, including the appropriate percentage of the relevant salary rate to be paid to the employee, will be lodged by the OAIC with Fair Work Australia.
5.2 All assessment instruments shall be agreed and signed by the parties to the assessment.
6. Review of assessment
6.1 The assessment of the applicable percentage should be subject to annual review or earlier on the basis of a reasonable request for such a review. The process of review shall be in accordance with the procedures for assessing capacity under the Supported Wage System.
7. Other terms and conditions of employment
7.1 Where an assessment has been made, the applicable percentage will apply to the salary rate only. Employees covered by the provisions of this appendix will be entitled to the same terms and conditions of employment as all other employees covered by this Agreement paid on a pro rata basis.
8. Workplace adjustment
8.1 The OAIC will take all reasonable steps to make changes in the workplace to enhance the employee's capacity to do the job. Changes may involve redesign of job duties, working time arrangements and work organisation in consultation with other employees in the area.
9. Trial period
9.1 In order for an adequate assessment of the employee's capacity to be made, an employer may employ a person under the provisions of this appendix for a trial period not exceeding 12 weeks, except that in some cases additional work adjustment time (not exceeding 4 weeks) may be needed.
9.2 During the trial period the assessment of capacity will be undertaken and the proposed salary rate for a continuing employment relationship will be determined.
9.3 The minimum amount payable to the employee during the trial period will be no less than $75 per week.
9.4 Where the employer and employee wish to establish a continuing employment relationship following the completion of the trial period, a further contract of employment shall be entered into based on the outcome of assessment under Clause 4 of this appendix.