COVID-19 Updates - 3rd April, 2020

9.00am, 3rd April, 2020

JobKeeper update

As noted in previous circulars, and on the COVID-19 page of the ClubsNSW website, the Government’s recently announced JobKeeper scheme provides for payments to businesses with a 30% reduction in revenue of $1,500 per fortnight to pass on to eligible employees.

Member Clubs are advised to register their interest for the JobKeeper scheme on the ATO’s website, here.

Member Clubs are advised of the following matters, which clubs have raised with ClubsNSW:

Precluding eligible employees

Member Clubs are advised not to exclude employees who are eligible.

Exercising a discretion to exclude eligible employees may result in legal action by those employees for unfair or unlawful dismissal and is therefore not advised.

Payroll tax and workers compensation

It is not yet known whether JobKeeper payments to employees will be subject to NSW Payroll Tax, or whether the payments will affect workers compensation premiums.

The Government is proposing to introduce and pass the JobKeeper package next Wednesday 8 April 2020, which means that further detail on the scheme may not be known until that time.

Clubs contemplating whether to start making JobKeeper payments to stood down employees before the legislation is enacted should consider that the payments may increase payroll tax and workers compensation premiums.

Requiring employees to work for JobKeeper

As we will not know the precise details around the JobKeeper scheme until at least next Wednesday, it is not advised to require employees on stand down to be recalled to work for the payment, at this time. There are many issues associated with recalling an employee from stand down, including:

  • Breaching their current contractual arrangements regarding hours of work;
  • Whether they have the skills and competency to perform the work required;
  • Additional costs, including superannuation, workers’ compensation premiums and long service leave accruals; and
  • Whether this ends the period of stand down under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth).

COVID-19 Industry Shutdown Survey

ClubsNSW recently emailed all club managers requesting that they complete our Industry Shutdown Survey. This is a reminder that the survey response is due by COB today, Friday 3 April. To take the survey click here.

The survey will assist ClubsNSW in engaging with the NSW and Federal governments to communicate the impact the shutdown on the industry and support our advocacy effort for measures to support clubs during the shutdown and recovery periods.

The survey asks several important questions relating to financial, employment and community support impacts. You will require financial records on-hand to complete the survey promptly.

You are unable to save a draft and return to complete the survey, so please prepare to finish it in one sitting.

In-person monthly board meetings

Member Clubs are advised against holding in-person board meetings for at least the next 3 months while the Public Health Orders remain in force.

The latest orders from the NSW Minister for Health stipulate that a person cannot leave their home except for a prescribed reason; which includes “travelling for the purposes of work if the person cannot work from [their] place of residence”. These orders effectively prohibit in-person board meetings, because in almost all cases a meeting could be held using a telephone or videoconference.

Where possible, clubs should hold board meetings electronically via telephone or by using videoconference facilities. Member Clubs are reminded of Liquor and Gaming NSW’s Statement of Regulatory Intent regarding Covid-19, which is available here. In it, L&GNSW acknowledges that the situation has created an exceptional set of circumstances that have significant impacts on clubs, and that they have regard to the unprecedented pressures on industry and take a reasonable and proportionate response to compliance. Compliance and enforcement activity will continue, but with a primary focus on matters that pose significant risk to public safety and community wellbeing.

Employment opportunities for stood-down or redundant club staff

Lifestyle Solutions, an NDIS funded home care provider for people with disabilities, has approached ClubsNSW to invite stood-down and redundant club employees to apply for casual and fixed-term employment vacant positions. The COVID-19 pandemic has heightened Lifestyle Solutions’ demand for support for persons with disabilities, given the restrictions on movement, home isolation, and the scarcity of essential supplies.

The responsibilities of the vacant positions involve working with people that have a disability, to provide in home care such as medication, meals, personal care and hygiene.

Applicants must have a current first aid certificate and it is preferable they have a drivers’ licence. All other training is provided by Lifestyle Solution during paid time. Successful applicants are also given a work “buddy” and accompanied by other staff to client homes.

More information can be found here .

Back to COVID-19 

For more information or any questions, please contact the ClubsNSW Members Enquiries Centre.

Contact Member Enquiries Centre