Australian Council of Trade Unions Secretary Sally McManus wrote to the Prime Minister, calling on him to convene an emergency meeting with union leaders representing essential workers to address the escalating national Omicron crisis.
The ACTU Secretary laid out a list of demands on behalf of workers, who continue to battle on the front lines of the fight against the virus. The ACTU has demanded:
1. Rapid Antigen Tests be made free and accessible for all Australians, as quickly as possible, with tests prioritised for frontline workers until current supply failures are resolved.
2. Paid Pandemic Leave be restored for workers who are close contacts with a work colleague, which was stripped from workers last week.
3. Workers be kept safe at work, including mask requirements to N95 or P2 standard, warning Scott Morrison that unions will fight any attempt to water down OHS laws.
4. The Morrison Government to restore income support for people who have been forced out of work and left without pay because of the onslaught Omicron, as well as financial assistance for businesses who have been devastated by the current outbreak.
This is the letter we sent the PM.— Sally McManus (@sallymcmanus) January 10, 2022
- free RATs, sick ppl should not have to venture out into Harvey Norman stores, supermarkets or pharmacies
- fix close contact rules and payments, no watering down safety laws
- N95/P2 masks
- Support payments restored pic.twitter.com/HbJ4gHviWv
Workers be kept safe at work.— Australian Services Union (@asu_nsw_act) January 10, 2022
Rapid Antigen Tests must be free and accessible with tests prioritised for frontline workers.
Paid Pandemic Leave must be restored.
The Morrison Government to restore income support for people who have been forced out of work and left without pay.