CPSU members in DESE have expressed serious disappointment with updated flexible work and working from home policies.

Instead, we want to see improvements to the department’s flexible work documents, in line with the Working during the pandemic: The future of work is hybrid research project.

If you want to see better flexible work and WFH policies:

The more support we have for an improved policy the better chance we have of making a difference. Demonstrated strong support through a petition will help us show staff want better flexible work policies at DESE.

The CPSU has secured a meeting with the Secretary to discuss the research findings and to advocate on your behalf for improvements to the documents.

Improvements we are seeking include:

  • An ‘if not, why not’ approach to WFH. This is the assumption that WFH can be approved unless there’s a compelling operational reason for working in the office.
  • A truly flexible WFH policy, instead of arbitrary caps or limits on WFH on particular or consecutive days.
  • Lowering the delegation for approving requests to WFH:
    • for less than two days per week this should be lower than SES Band 1
    • for more than two days a week this should be lower than SES Band 2.
  • The policy should include key protections such as:
    • recognition that WFH can be an effective control measure against the spread of COVID-19 (particularly for people with vulnerabilities or who are caring for at risk groups), and
    • supervisors should not unreasonably expect employees to be contactable when they are not working.
  • Support for employees WFH including virtual ergonomic assessment and ensuring employees take regular breaks.
  • Approval timeframes to be shortened.
  • To ensure ongoing openness and transparency, data on approvals and disapprovals to be provided at consultative committee meetings.
  • Recognition of employee rights to request flexibility under the National Employment Standards, including changes to location of work.

How can I help?

  1. Sign our petition today to tell Secretary Bruniges we want better flexible work and WFH policies at DESE.
  2. Share this template email with colleagues and ask them to sign too.
  3. Print this poster to display at your desk and on notice boards.

If you are not already a member and support our work for an improved policy, we invite you to join the CPSU today.