Examining the Feasibility of a National Portable Long Service Leave - Macquarie University Centre for the Health Economy

Examining the Feasibility of a National Portable Long Service Leave - Macquarie University Centre for the Health Economy

This project was undertaken during 2012-2013, and is now completed. Download the McKell Institute Report.

Project overview

This report examines the feasibility of a nationally consistent portable long service leave (PLSL) scheme for Australia.

Traditionally, three reasons have been cited for providing long service leave (LSL) benefits:

  • to reduce labour turnover;
  • to provide a reward for long and faithful service; and
  • to enable employees halfway through their working life to recover their energies and return to work renewed, refreshed, and reinvigorated.
The third objective, in particular, is becoming increasingly important to Australian workers.

Australians are spending larger proportions of their lifetimes in employment and growing numbers of workers are remaining in the workforce at older ages. As the length of time in work increases, the importance of LSL entitlements – particularly for those who work in physically or mentally exhausting
jobs – becomes increasingly evident.

Despite this, high mobility trends in the profile of Australia’s workforce have resulted in a low proportion of workers being able to access LSL benefits – some due to employment choices and others for structural reasons.

Recognising this, a small number of industries with high structural job mobility, such as construction and contract cleaning, have introduced portable long service schemes (PLSLs). These schemes have successfully improved access for a small percentage of workers.

This report examines the
feasibility of introducing a nationally consistent PLSL scheme that would cover all workers, including those who are casual, permanent full-time and permanent part-time.

Funding

  • McKell Institute
  • Institute of Actuaries

Researchers

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