The new Portable Long Service Authority will open in Bendigo on Monday, employing more than 30 people and tasked with administering a new long service leave scheme for workers in the security, contract cleaning and community services industries.
The new scheme allows workers in those industries to accrue long service leave, even if they change employers, but remain in the same industry.
Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer Steve Dimopoulos said that as many as 150,000 workers will benefit as of Monday.
“It is reform that thousands of Victorian workers have fought long and hard for,” Mr Dimopoulos said.
The scheme aims to return fairness and security to workers in those sectors, with a parliamentary committee finding instances where workers would be in the same work, in the same place for many years, without long service, due to changes in subcontracting arrangements or company names.
Rebecca Dix from Haven; Home, Safe said this is a fantastic scheme for workers.
“In the community services industry, we work with the most vulnerable people in the community and that’s challenging, so people change jobs regularly,” Ms Dix said.
“To be able to get long service leave now makes it a lot fairer,” she said.
From July 1 until September 30, businesses will register for the scheme.
From October, they will be required to submit quarterly returns detailing days worked and pay received for their employees.
A levy will be paid to the Portable Long Service Authority, which will invest the funds and use them to pay workers when they claim long service.
Member for Bendigo West Maree Edwards said the authority, headquartered in King Street, Bendigo, shows how credible Bendigo is in attracting quality jobs.
“Bendigo will continue to be front and centre when it comes to serving the service industry and government jobs across Bendigo,” Ms Edwards said.
– Nicholas Nakos