Increase Bereavement Leave
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'When my father died I was at Uni, there was no question about how much time I would take off, I took what I needed. My mother however, who was in the workforce was expected to take only 2 days leave to grieve.'
In Australia, employees are only allocated 2 days leave to grieve when someone they love has passed away. There are so many considerations both physically and emotionally as you adjust to your altered reality. Recent models of bereavement recognise the oscillating nature of grief; where our view moves from a loss orientation to an orientation of restoring our changed world in some way.
Grief doesn't discriminate and neither should we
We call on the Australian Federal Government to increase the number of days for bereavement leave from 2 to 10 days in the National Employment Standards to ensure this is available for ALL Australians.
In addition, we are asking for up to 12 weeks extended bereavement leave be made available in extenuating circumstances on advice of a Doctor or Psychologist. We ask that Centrelink's current guidelines for the 12 week bereavement support payment be extended to cover those who are not fit for work, to provide a safety net when life takes unexpected turns. Taking into account the cyclical repetitious nature of bereavement, we ask that this leave is available to people for up to 12 months after the loss of a loved one, and to include casual, contract and temporary employment conditions. Thus providing job security for all.
As a community we should offer those experiencing a bereavement, reasonable time to grieve. Please sign our petition.
You can also write to your local Member of Parliament, requesting that they put bereavement leave on the agenda in parliament. Please see this link for contact details.
Memoleaves is a website devoted to sharing grief and end of life stories. Our research into the state of bereavement leave is available here, we continue to research this important area. With this petition we hope to shine a light on the insufficient amount of bereavement leave as decreed in the National Employment Standards.
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