Labor lifts ban on public sector work

Federal officials are allowed to take another day off in lieu of Australia Day after the Albanian government lifted a ban issued by the previous coalition government as national conversation over the appropriateness of celebrating on January 26 gathers momentum.

Katy Gallagher, the minister responsible for public services, said the government had lifted the ban on bank holiday substitutes introduced under former Prime Minister Scott Morrison just before last year’s general election, meaning “existing arrangements” for the workforce are being retained would.

Katy Gallagher, the Commonwealth Minister for Public Services, has lifted an Australia Day work ban.

Katy Gallagher, the Commonwealth Minister for Public Services, has lifted an Australia Day work ban.Credit:Alex Ellinghausen

Gallagher told ABC Radio the coalition’s policy is “a guideline for future EBAs [enterprise bargaining agreements]over certain days without consulting anyone, including the union”.

“Part of our electoral policy was to allow or resume real collective bargaining [Australian Public Service] … and that is consistent with that policy,” she said Wednesday morning.

Gallagher said there was no practical change for officials before Jan. 26 this year, as the coalition ban came after that date in 2022. The condition applies not only to Australia Day, but also to other public holidays.

“If they negotiate in the future that they don’t want those days, or they don’t want to replace public holidays as part of their EBA, then that’s a matter for them and their department,” she said.


Gallagher said there is a growing awareness of how Australia Day celebrations have impacted Indigenous Australians and that people in the community “have different views of it and what it means to them”.

“And you know, part of what we’re trying to do with our campaign around the voice is to bring the country together to genuinely try to address some of the pain that’s a result of this country’s history,” she said , but added that was a “separate issue”. Labor lifts ban on public sector work

Callan Tansill

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