Public Holiday Rostering
We have received enquiries regarding rostering arrangements for Public Holidays following the Full Court decision that was handed down by the Federal Courts in the matter of Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union v OS MCAP Pty Ltd (2023) FCAFC. This decision means that all Employers (including NSWPF) cannot unilaterally roster an employee to work a public holiday without making the request to work and for then for consideration of reasonable requests from workers to not work.
The PANSW has been in negotiations with NSWPF since the publication of the decision which applies to all Employers in relation to the NSWPF updating their current rostering practices concerning public holiday rostering. NSWPF have now updated their rostering practices and SOP’s, on 18 August a nemesis was sent to all officers.
Whilst it is likely to be reasonable that an emergency services employer can require some employees to work on a Public Holiday, the outcome of this decision now requires further steps to be undertaken to protect the rights of employees.
The advice of the PANSW is:
- Officers can be requested to work a public holiday
- This can be presented in the form of a draft roster with a clear indication that officers can submit a request NOT TO WORK the public holiday within that roster period
- This request must outline the reasons for not wanting to work - see s.114(4) Fair Work Act 2009 (referred from s.7 Public Holidays Act 2010 NSW)
- This request must be reasonably considered by the NSWPF and a response provided to the officer
- The roster is then determined and published
In that roster the NSWPF may require an officer to work the public holiday, if they have first been requested to work and do not have reasonable grounds to refuse
Please note, any request will still need to follow the usual local process of reviewing the grounds for the request, with due consideration to be given to the reasons whilst balancing the operational needs of the command.
The PANSW will continue to monitor the implementation of this process in line with the decision for the upcoming public holidays to ensure consistency and fairness is being applied. We have seen Commands and Districts already amending their rostering processes to proactively fit this new process in giving officers sufficient notice and opportunity.
Internal operational duties for injured officers (physical injuries)
Conference 2016 provided clear direction to the PANSW that securing ongoing employment within the NSWPF was a priority for members with injuries that may prevent them from returning to operational policing duties. The PANSW developed what was titled “Best Practice deployment of injured officers” which was served on the NSWPF at that time. An article was published in the August edition of the 2016 Police News magazine identifying the approach the PANSW was seeking engagement on.
Since that time, we have advocated strongly through various working parties within NSWPF that greater flexibility and acceptance of risk is necessary to maximise capability within the organisation, particularly for police officers who may be carrying an injury or illness and are not at full capacity. This has been a slow burn, but after being trialled in the Northern Region and then other regional areas, the NSWPF have now approved the Internal Operational Duties for injured officers (physical injuries) approach giving greater capability to officers with injuries.
The relevant Fact Sheet is titled Internal Operational Duties for injured officers (physical injuries ONLY) and should be referred to for officers seeking to remain operational with an injury. The Fact Sheet explains:
Recover at work
It is well documented that working has a positive effect on physical and mental health and through the provision of suitable employment, the NSWPF aims to support workers to recover at work. For more details about recovery at work process see NSWPF Injury Management: Return to Work Program.
Internal Operational Duties (IODs)
Internal Operational Duties aim to support officers who are recovering from a physical injury and assist Commands to meet first response requirements. A Command, in consultation with an officer and injury management advisor (IMA), may consider that IODs may form part of a graded Recover at Work (R@W) plan where pre-injury duties is the goal and officers cannot be permanently restricted. Note: IODs are only appropriate for Internal Duties (Station and Administration) and arms and appointments cannot be worn outside the station. IODs can be considered at any stage throughout the R@W process.
- Physical injuries only (not psychological)
- Suitable for work and non-work-related injuries
- Suitability/risk assessed* to wear full arms and appointments Able to work front counter in a police station
- Officers with lower torso injuries (ankles, knees etc) are deemed to be most suitable
- Officers with upper torso injuries are also eligible providing their ‘shooting hand’ is not compromised.
- Command identify suitable officer
- Discuss with officer whether they would like to participate in IODs as part of their R@W plan
- IMA seek approval from NTD or physiological for medical approval for officer to undertake IODs
- IMA provide treater modified task analysis (appendix A) and proposed graded R@W plan
- NTD or physic provide medical clearance
- Command determine suitability for officer undertaking IODs*
- Officer undertake R@W and this is monitored by Command and IMA Monitor progress through IMPs
- Officer completes ROSA upon PID clearance
*A Command can make an agile suitability assessment based on medical information and safety considerations whether an officer can undertake IODs. In the event the command is unsure they can undertake a formal WHS risk assessment.
Modified duties performance assessment (MDPA)
An MDPA will be used if a Risk Assessment determines this should be needed to allow an injured officer to undertake IODs. MDPA are generally used for officers with upper torso injuries / arm injuries. The form identifies a range of tactical options in consultation with the NTD, Injured Officer and Commander. The relevant forms should be provided to an accredited Operational Safety Instructor (OSI). The OSI upon receipt of the MDPA will conduct a formal assessment of the injured worker relevant to the identified performance objectives as indicated in the MDPA form/s.
This new process is a positive step in the right direction for the NSWPF. The PANSW will continue to press for greater flexibility to enable the retention and deployment of officers with injuries. Undertaking work is good for you and if you can stay with the employer of your choice, doing the work that you enjoy, then this is what we should strive to achieve.
Any member who has suffered an injury or illness and requires advice on Recover at Work, injury management and rehabilitation and associated financial entitlements should contact the PANSW Head Office on 9265 6777 or firstname.lastname@example.org for individual assistance
Strength in unity - PANSW forums
PANSW Branch Officials from across the Northern Region gathered in the serene landscape of Hunter Valley for a productive and informative Police Association of New South Wales forum. The event held on Wednesday 19 July saw a diverse range of topics discussed and addressed, reflecting the commitment of the PANSW Branch Officials to fostering effective communication and addressing issues facing the region.
To best utilise the limited time together, the day prior saw the completion of branch focus training for more than 15 new Branch Officials in the Northern region. The dedication of the Branch Officials to their members ensures we have a functioning Police Association that understands and addresses issues for each branch.
The forum kicked off promptly at 8:15 am the next day with Branch Officials and attendees gathered at the well-attended forum, with more than 30 attendees. It was a moment for networking and setting the stage for the day ahead. The official proceedings began with a passionate address from PANSW President Kevin Morton at 8:30 am. President Morton highlighted the importance of unity, proactive engagement, and collective efforts in ensuring the welfare of both officers and the community.
Following the President's address, Vice President Ian Allwood and Executive Members Paul Ireland (Northern 1) and Darren McCaughey (Northern 2) took to the podium to deliver their own insightful addresses, emphasising the significance of collaboration and joint endeavours together as a region.
PANSW Secretary Pat Gooley then spoke to the room about the pressing matter of Concessional Cap issues and the ongoing campaign, outlining Your Association's stance and efforts. He then went through the current 'Protect Our Future, Fix our Super' campaign, and how the targeted Industrial Action was putting pressure on the Commonwealth to find a solution to the discriminatory and unfair issue that has affected so many members.
Member Support Coordinator Ian Johnstone followed, providing vital updates on the Welfare Scheme, which reinforced the Association's commitment to the wellbeing of its members.
The morning session continued with industrial updates presented by Northern & NW Metro Regions Industrial Officer Aileen Fleming and myself. These updates included discussions on significant issues including remote incentives, parental leave, the relief pool, and matters related to the Award and PBRI.
Organiser Glenn Price then took the stage to delve into the discussion of FRPA versus Proactive Workload, offering insights into this critical issue facing the region. Various other updates were then presented, covering topics such as the Rotation Policy, Northern Region Desirable Location, ODS (Overtime Directive System), and Public Holiday Rostering.
The participants then engaged in a workshop to formulate questions for the Northern Region Commander, encouraging a proactive approach to addressing pertinent issues. The afternoon session commenced with an address by Assistant Commissioner Peter McKenna, the Northern Region Commander. McKenna's insights shed light on the region's overarching goals, challenges, and strategies.
Organiser Glenn Price then returned to discuss BWV (Body-Worn Video) issues, engaging attendees in a conversation about their significance and effective implementation.
Lead Organiser Jon Goddard then discussed the crucial topic of Blue Tape, highlighting the need to streamline processes for efficiency and effectiveness. The floor was opened to ideas from Branch Officials, with the following discussions highlighting the innovation that is required moving forward. Fantastic ideas came from Branch Officials across the room, providing valuable data for Mr Goddard to take back to the NSWPF.
With the conclusion of the forum's official proceedings, attendees departed after enjoying a well-earned afternoon tea, armed with insights, connections, and a sense of unity, ready to take on the challenges and opportunities ahead.
The PANSW Hunter Valley Forum served as a testament to the power of dialogue and cooperation in driving positive change for PANSW members.
Invasive punters club provisions resolved by PANSW
Invasive 'Punters Club' and other provisions removed from Procedures for Managing Conflicts of Interest following PANSW intervention.
The PANSW were made aware of changes made by the NSW Police Force to policies surrounding Declarable Associations, secondary employment and new obligations which were to be placed on members to declare involvement in what is commonly known as a “Punters Club” or the financial interest in a racing animal.
Disappointingly, the PANSW was not consulted about these changes. We were unaware of them when the new provisions were forwarded to Professional Standards Managers across the state for communication and enforcement. This lack of consultation has forced this organisation to intervene to protect its members retrospectively.
The PANSW immediately reviewed the amendments, giving us great concern about the impact and onerous process this will have on thousands of members involved in social “punters clubs” often with a group of friends, whether with other Police Officers or civilians. In our view, having to disclose this information to the NSWPF was a significant overreach and unnecessary.
This is an attempt to control what our members do in their personal lives. At a time when police are stretched thin, the completion of more forms and disclosures is a complete and utter waste of the time of the hard-working police who should be focused on doing their job.
As a result of extended advocacy by the PANSW on your behalf last week, I am happy to inform members that all references to “Punters Clubs” have been removed from the Procedures for Managing Conflicts of Interest, and members will not be required to declare or disclose membership of such groups.
The PANSW has also had the policy around ownership of “Racing Animals” modified, including the removal of a need to disclose any members of “public syndicates” such as a small individual share in a horse via an established syndication company and the use of conditional approvals preventing members from missing out on a particular purchase due to potential delays in any approval process.
This policy is an example of how consultation with the PANSW as per the consultation requirements as a key stakeholder is crucial on behalf of our members. We are here to ensure that policy amendments are in the best interests of our members and do not create an impractical situation that is impossible to implement. Common sense has to be applied.
Secondary employment requirement resolved by PANSW
We have received numerous enquiries over the past few days following an email concerning Self-Managed Superannuation Funds (SMSF) and the requirement for members to make secondary employment applications and declare themselves as Directors of same.
The PANSW has made enquiries with NSWPF after analysing the Policy and can confirm that there has been no change to the NSWPF Secondary Employment Policy. There is no requirement to apply for secondary employment if you are a director of a SMSF despite some initial advice coming from NSWPF indicating you had to, THIS IS INCORRECT.
The new Conflicts of Interest Policy however DOES REQUIRE a declaration to be made if the SMSF (for which you're a director of) has ownership in a high risk industry. If the ownership is via owning shares on the ASX or Cboe, you're only required to make this declaration if you reach the major shareholder threshold for the exchange (usually a shareholding of 5% or more) for example a licensed premises.
Members need to be aware that there is no General requirement to submit a secondary employment application for conducting a general Self-Managed Super Fund under the Policy except in the above-mentioned high risk industry circumstances. The list of high risk industries can be found on the intranet.
The PANSW will continue to work in the best interest of our members, and when alerted to information concerning your rights or in this case privacy, we will make sure you are protected.
Professional Academic Allowance
Members may be entitled to claim the professional academic allowance if they meet certain criteria contained in clause 46 of the Crown Employees (Police Officers – 2021) Award.
The Award prescribes certain conditions for claiming this allowance.
The member must hold a completed vocationally relevant degree or qualification. The relevance of such qualifications is determined by the NSWPF Tertiary Scholarship Committee on application.
The condition of granting this allowance is that the NSWPF must have not met any course fees, travel, or accommodation expenses. The allowance also is not applicable if the course/qualification was done during normal working hours, or using study leave (from the NSWPF).
The allowance is claimable only for members holding the rank of Constable (Including Senior Constable) however, it ceases once the officer reaches their first merit-based promotion (Sgt and above)
The entitlement is $398 per annum for the Diploma in Criminology $398 per annum, the Bachelor of Law Degree, the Associate Diploma in Justice Administration $792 per annum. All other qualifications entitle you to $792 per annum if determined vocationally relevant by the Committee.
Members should ensure also that their qualifications are recorded in the SAP. This allowance is available only upon application, it is not automatic. Members can obtain the relevant form on the NSWPF intranet.