ECWs to have access to paid public holidays
The Sector > Jobs News > SA’s ECWs secure public holiday win following Ministerial intervention

SA’s ECWs secure public holiday win following Ministerial intervention

by Freya Lucas

March 11, 2024

Early childhood workers (ECWs) in South Australia will be automatically paid if they would usually work on the three upcoming March public holidays thanks to a newly struck enterprise bargaining agreement.


While the agreement is awaiting approval from the SA Employment Tribunal, the Australian Education Union (AEU) is claiming the development as a win.


The agreement, which also applies to School Services Officers (SSOs) follows teachers securing a new $1.6 billion enterprise bargaining agreement (EBA) with the state government late last year, which delivered a 13 per cent pay boost for SA teachers over the next three years.


As part of the ECW and SSO agreement, there will no longer be a need to have sufficient accrual of Time Off In Lieu of Payment (TOIL) to cover public holidays. Under the previous arrangements, ECWs and SSOs would often need to quickly accrue TOIL to cover the upcoming Adelaide Cup public holiday and the two public holidays over the Easter long weekend.


Thanks to intervention efforts from SA Education Minister Blair Boyer, ECWs and SSOs will now be paid for the three upcoming public holidays, pending Tribunal approval.


A letter shared with local news source In Daily, reportedly from the government’s Enterprise Bargaining Unit said “SSOs and ECWs will not need to use accrued TOIL to be paid for the Adelaide Cup public holiday on Monday 11 March 2024… or the Easter public holidays”.


“The proposed new school and preschool education staff enterprise agreement removes the requirement for SSO and ECW employees who only work during the term to accrue time off in lieu (TOIL) to receive payment for public holidays that aren’t worked,” the letter reportedly reads.


“This change will mean all SSOs and ECWs will receive payment for public holidays not worked without the need to accrue TOIL.”


The application for approval of the new enterprise agreement has been lodged with the Tribunal, however the process is yet to be finalised. 


The Enterprise Bargaining Unit added that “as there are several upcoming public holidays, the department has decided to apply this new provision immediately, and not wait for (the Tribunal’s) approval of the new enterprise agreement”.


“Once (the Tribunal) has approved the enterprise agreement, all other terms and conditions will come into effect.”


Mr Boyer told In Daily that he was pleased to have made sure the upcoming changes have now been applied. 


To access the local coverage of this story please see here

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