Inadequate WFH arrangements a risk to all

15-Jul-2021

 

Our Union is currently supporting members who are experiencing issues with working from home (WFH) policies and processes.

Since the rise of the pandemic hospitals have put in place local arrangement for doctors which allow them to perform their non-clinical duties at home, including Emergency Department staff. With the recent outbreak of the highly transmissible Delta strain in Sydney, the need for consistent WFH arrangements is urgent.

Commuting to hospital carries clear risks, to staff who are exposing themselves to high-risk work environments, and to their families and the broader community where the virus may spread as doctors travel from home to work.

The Public Health Orders require that, across the whole of NSW, an employer must allow an employee to work at the employee’s place of residence if it is reasonably practicable to do so. You also have a right to a safe workplace under WHS legislation.

Despite the Ministers direction, we have heard from members whose application to work from home during non-clinical shifts has been rejected, including at Liverpool Hospital.

ASMOF is advocating on behalf of these members at a local level, drawing attention to employers obligations under Section 19 of the Work, Health and Safety Act 2011 , which stipulates that they must take reasonable steps to mitigate the likelihood of the risk of harm of contracting and transmitting COVID-19.

We are also drawing attention to Section 8 of the Public Health (COVID-19 Temporary Movement and Gathering Restrictions) Order 2021.

If you are concerned about WFH arrangements in your workplace, please contact us so we can assist.