At the Delegates to Management meeting in November 2019 Workers’ Compensation and the issues staff are dealing with on Workers’ Compensation was presented to the Commissioner.
The POVB Executive is looking at Workers’ Compensation in two areas.
The first area is to get better Workers’ Compensation for staff under the Act. Under the current Act we are better off for the first 13 weeks, compared to the old Act. However, after that our pay, pre injury average weekly earnings – PIAWE payment, is significantly reduced to 80 per cent. We are embarking on an industrial campaign to get this changed. This will be a political campaign and is not something that can be changed by the Commissioner.
The second area is how the POVB Executive can work with CSNSW to improve the service between the injured worker, CSNSW and the Insurer.
Jason Charlton and Amanda Cotter met with CSNSW last week and from that meeting came the following:
- There will be monthly meetings with representatives from the POVB Executive and CSNSW Injury Management. The POVB representatives will be Amanda Cotter and either Jason Charlton or Nicole Jess.
- At these meetings we can discuss individual members’ issues if we are contacted for assistance. The individuals will be asked to sign an indemnity form so medical issues can be discussed without breaching confidentiality.
- Individuals will need to contact Amanda Cotter so she can compile the list for each month’s meeting. The list of names to be discussed will be given to CSNSW one week prior.
- CSNSW will do up an issues register to keep notes and that will be accessible for the POVB Executive and CSNSW. This will be like minutes to the meeting.
- HR Injury Management will implement a FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions, about the rights of injured workers with the input of the POVB Executive. This FAQ will be part of a kit that will be given to the injured worker by the FM in charge of Workers’ Compensation. The FAQ will contain things such as:
Pre Injury Average Weekly Earnings, otherwise known as PIAWE payments, and how they are calculated.
Information on Workers’ Compensation Independent Review Office, otherwise known as WIRO.
Staff entitlements, such as cleaners, lawns mowed, travel and medication compensation.
Timeframes for approvals
Back-to-work plans – restricted duties.
Payroll issues – Workers’ Compensation is paid a month behind.
Rehabilitation Providers and their role for the injured worker.
- At the next meeting there will be a representative from QBE and Payroll present to answer any questions.
- Extra training for Functional Managers on Workers’ Compensation.
- Due to the issues raised at the DTM the Commissioner has approved five extra staff to be employed in Injury Management. The POVB Executive believe this is a positive result. Due to reductions in that area the staff had a workload of well over 100 staff on Workers’ Compensation and that is not a reasonable workload to assist the injured staff. Hopefully with this will increase serviceability.
The POVB Executive requests that if any member that is currently on Workers’ Compensation and would like a question raised in reference to their matter, please email Amanda Cotter by 20 February 2020 so she can collate all the information for the next meeting. Once Amanda is contacted she will organise for the indemnity form to be sent to individuals for them to sign prior to the meeting and then send back to her.
We then ask for future meetings that all requests for representation be in to Amanda by the 15th of each month.
Amanda also contacts everyone that is assaulted. We ask that everyone responds and answers the questions that she sends to members. This information will also assist us in our political campaign to address our inferior Workers’ Compensation.
We also take this time to again to highlight the importance of making sure that when a staff member is assaulted and receives an injury that the Assault Committee meets within five days of the assault as per the COPP. Please contact one of the Executive if this does not take place. We encourage everyone to make themselves aware of the COPP 13.4 Assault Section 12 – Assaults on Staff and 21.9 Governance structures, in this section it states that the Assault Committee is made up of the WHS Committee.
The COPP 21.9 Government Structures states that the Committee should meet only when a staff member is injured or if deemed necessary. We encourage all staff members if assaulted to state that they want the Assault Committee to meet, if you feel strongly that there are issues to discuss on the assault and the inmate.
Nicole Jess Chairperson
0427 609 199
Jason Charlton Vice Chairperson
0401 500 976
Thor Sutherland Country Chairperson
0447 633 476
Natalie Howes Secretary
0407 011 441
Darren King Assistant Secretary
0407 935 039
David McCauley POVB Industrial Officer
0419 022 767