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Thursday, 15 September 1983
Page: 959

Question No. 240

Dr Charlesworth asked the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Public Service Matters, upon notice, on 25 May 1983:

(1) Are any Commonwealth public servants working on a permanent part-time basis ; if so, (a) what are their conditions of service and (b) are loadings being paid to them for permanent part-time work.

(2) Does he intend extending the option of permanent part-time work in the Commonwealth public service; if so, what action is being taken towards its introduction on a more widespread basis.

Mr Dawkins —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) Persons presently employed on a formal part-time basis in the Australian Public Service are all temporary employees. Those who work for at least 24 hours a week over at least 4 days are entitled to recreation and sick leave credits and maternity leave. Those who work less than this do not receive these leave benefits but receive a 15 per cent pay loading. All part-time staff are entitled to long service leave and workers' compensation.

(2) Considerable work has been done on developing a possible scheme of permanent part-time employment, including establishment and staffing arrangements and the application of pro-rata terms and conditions of employment. The Public Service Board has held discussions with the Department of Finance in relation to the question of superannuation provisions for part-time staff, and with the peak councils of staff organisations. The issues that need to be taken into consideration are the efficient operating requirements of departments, staff interests, union attitudes, and conditions of employment, including superannuation arrangements. The latter, in particular, has wider implications. The Government is to consider these issues further, before a decision is reached on the development of a possible scheme for the Australian Public Service.