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Canberra Today 2°/5° | Sunday, May 22, 2022 | Digital Edition | Crossword & Sudoku

Libs want ‘immediate’ covid leave for healthcare workers

COVID-19 leave should be made available “immediately” to healthcare and other frontline workers, according to the ACT Opposition.

Giulia Jones, the Canberra Liberals spokesperson for health, said it’s “unfair” that nurses are being expected to use up their sick leave before being granted COVID-19 leave.

“For the entire pandemic, ACT government ministers have been thanking health workers in press conferences, but now it seems that nurses are expected to use up sick leave before being granted COVID-19 leave,” Ms Jones said.

“It isn’t good enough for workers to be without covid leave when they are working with covid patients every day, when this leave was created for this very purpose.”

Ms Jones said her comments are in response to media reports that COVID-19 positive healthcare workers were being required to return to work while still positive if they were asymptomatic, and required to use all their sick leave before being able to access the government’s special COVID‑19 leave.

“Workers should definitely not be expected to come back to work while still covid positive,” Ms Jones said.

“The Canberra Health Service’s HR system and employment agreements are not suited to covid and should be immediately revised or amended to reflect the new reality.”

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