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Wednesday, 20 May 1970


Mr Wallis (GREY, SOUTH AUSTRALIA) asked the Prime Minister, upon notice:

(1)   Do the present pro rata provisions of the Commonwealth Employees' Furlough Act place Commonwealth employees at a disadvantage in comparison with many other long service leave arrangements.

(2)   Has he given any further consideration to amending the Commonwealth Employees' Furlough Act to make furlough grants for Commonwealth employees applicable pro rata after 10 years' service, instead of the present period of 15 years.


Mr Gorton - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1)   The Commonwealth Employees' Furlough Act 1943-1968 provides for pro rata payment on cessation in the following circumstances:

(a)   after 10 years' service - where the employee satisfies the approving authority that his ceasing to be a Commonwealth employee is justified by domestic or other pressing necessity;

(b)   after 4 years' service - where the employee ceases on account of:

(i)   death

(ii)   permanent ill health

(iii)   age retirement

(iv)   retrenchment.

The 'domestic or other pressing necessity' provision was introduced by Act No. 114 of 1967 and this Act also reduced from 8 to 4 years the qualifying periods in respect of cessation on account of death and permanent ill health.

A similar reduction in respect of cessation on account of age retirement or retrenchment was made by Act No. 58 of 1968.

These amendments were made after a review of similar provisions of other long service leave systems. The Public Service Board has advised me that although other systems vary widely, in the broad, the present pro rata provisions of the Commonwealth Employees' Furlough Act compare favourably willi those of other long service leave systems.

(2)   The matter of general eligibility for furlough for Commonwealth employees after 10 years' service instead of the present period of 15 years will be considered when the Commonwealth Employees' Furlough Act is next under review.







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