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Heavy toll - The Australian Business Review

By Alan J. McDonald


Heavy toll

Coming to work sick could be costing the Australian economy more than $34 billion a year in lost productivity, according to a Centre for International Economics report.

Despite having sick leave in the bank, many employees will not take time off for fear of retribution, but it ultimately costs organisations a higher price in lost productivity.

McDonald Murholme lawyer Francessca Lee says it is important that companies prevent illness spreading in the workplace and that dismissal for taking sick leave is unlawful. “If your temporary absence is one of the reasons for the dismissal, your employer may be in breach of anti-discrimination legislation of the Fair Work Act,” she says.

A record 100,000 flu cases were confirmed last year. An increase is expected this year.

Reference: Heavy toll, The Australian Business Review, 2nd July 2016