HSU Disability Services Update December 2021

In this update:

Worksite visits

Now that lockdowns have lifted, your HSU Organiser Lisa Ronneberg has been getting out to visit worksites and catching up with members. Lisa has recently visited Disability services in the ACT, Illawarra and the Central Coast, catching up with members and delegates and welcoming new members.
More worksite visits are planned. Please contact your organiser [E-Mail not displayed] if you want to organise a visit to your workplace.










Members and delegates at recent HSU worksite visits

NextSense Enterprise Agreement Update

The NextSense Enterprise Agreement went to the vote last week, with staff overwhelmingly voting in favour of the new Agreement. 
It was a mammoth process that began in August 2020 and saw the merging of ten separate Agreements and Awards into one, with six different unions or union branches representing their members at the bargaining table.
The HSU wants to give a HUGE SHOUT OUT to the amazing HSU Bargaining Reps who worked tirelessly on the new Agreement. Thank you for your diligence and professionalism, and for your representation of your HSU work colleagues. You all deserve a well-earned break!

"HSU members were able to contribute to the process as staff ‘on-the-ground’ and make sure it [the new Agreement] meets our needs. We all want NextSense to be a viable organisation long into the future retaining its excellent specialist staff and able to attract new staff.” 
– HSU Bargaining Rep Maree McTaggart - Audiologist NextSense (Broadmeadow/Newcastle)

"It was totally exhausting but a good experience to be a part of and understanding our work entitlements.  It was important to have HSU members at the table during the bargaining process to ensure all staff had a fair say in their future.”
- HSU Bargaining Rep Jacqui Treseder - Centre Co-ordinator/Admin NextSense (Gosford)

“The bargaining process was much bigger and more involved than I ever imagined. I was very grateful for the support of fellow bargaining reps being there to discuss ideas thoughts and concerns. It was great to have the support of the HSU to provide advice and suggestions specific to our concerns. As hard and long as the process was, it was a very positive process to be involved in.”
- HSU Bargaining Rep Emma Facey - Speech Pathologist NextSense

The NextSense Agreement will now be lodged with Fair Work. The HSU will update members on the outcome.

Health and Safety Representatives (HSRs)

Health and Safety Representatives are staff elected positions. The role and functions of HSRs are underpinned and protected by Work Health and Safety (WHS) laws, giving HSRs a powerful voice in their workplace to raise and resolve health and safety issues with their employer. The HSR role is actively supported by the HSU.
An HSR is not the same as an employer appointed staff member to a WHS committee. An HSR is elected by workers, represents workers, and must be consulted with by your employer on all WHS matters.
Guide Dogs NSW/ACT (GDN) are the latest group of workers to undertake the process of electing HSRs. Staff at GDN will soon receive a call for nominations, and elect their new HSRs.   
If your workplace does not have a HSR, or you would like to find out more info about how to elect a HSR, please read this factsheet on HSRs and contact your HSU Organiser Lisa Ronneberg via [E-Mail not displayed].

HSU Delegates

If you are friendly, open and approachable, and care about ensuring a good workplace for you and your workmates - become a workplace delegate!
Your union needs representatives from your workplace to ensure HSU members' views and interests are represented, and that your colleagues are supported when assistance is needed.
Want to know more?

For more information about the role of delegate and how to elect a delegate in your workplace, contact your organiser at [E-Mail not displayed].


Below are links to HSU Factsheets and Resources on a number of workplace issues members have recently contacted the HSU about.
Please print them out, share them with your work colleagues, and put up on noticeboards in your workplace.

If you work under the SCHADS Award:

If you have any questions about your rights or entitlements, please contact HSU Member Services on 1300 478 679.

Action: Save COVID Protections for Essential Workers

In May last year, emergency protections were introduced to support essential workers who contract COVID-19. The protections ensured that for the first 21 days, a sick worker didn't have to go through bureaucratic hoops to prove they contracted the disease at work. This is critical because we know essential workers are most likely to contract COVID-19 at work.
Now, NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet wants to repeal section 19B of the Workers Compensation Act which provides this protection.

Sign the petition to tell the Premier that you want to save COVID protections for essential workers.

The HSU is here for you

If you need information, support, advice and representation on any issue that affects your working life, from enquiries about your correct pay and conditions of employment, to assistance in workplace investigations and workers compensation claims, contact HSU Member Services on 1300 478 679.

HSU Member Benefits

Your membership with the Health Services Union entitles you to a range of member benefits such as: Ambulance Cover, Journey Personal Accident Insurance, Public Liability Insurance, Member Advantage discounts with over 90 suppliers, Wellbeing Benefits package, Assistance with Workers Compensation, Free Legal Will, Holiday House at Jervis Bay, Bereavement Benefit and more…  
For more information about Member Benefits, visit https://www.hsu.asn.au/why-join/member-benefits/ 

You can also download and print out this poster: