For those working as a casual in early childhood services, there have been updates and changes to your entitlements that you need to be aware of.
These changes came into effect on Saturday 27 March 2021. The changes were made by the Fair Work Amendment (Supporting Australia’s Jobs and Economic Recovery) Act 2021 (Amendment Act).
The Amendment Act introduces a:
- Casual Employment Information Statement
- definition of casual employment
- pathway for casual employees to move to full-time or part-time (permanent) employment.
Casual Employment Information Statement
When you start working at a new service your employer needs to give you a Casual Employment Information Statement (the CEIS) before, or as soon as possible after, you start your new job.
The CEIS is an information sheet developed by the Fair Work Ombudsman which provides details of a definition of a casual employee, the right to become a permanent employee and more.
Definition Of A Casual Employee
The FW Act has been amended to include a new definition of a casual employee.
Under the new definition, a person is a casual employee if they accept a job offer from an employer knowing that there is no firm advance commitment to ongoing work with an agreed pattern of work and more,
Once employed as a casual, an employee will continue to be a casual employee until they either:
- become a permanent employee through:
- casual conversion, or
- are offered and accept the offer of full-time or part-time employment, or
- stop being employed by the employer.
Existing Casual Employees
Casuals who were employed immediately before 27 March 2021 and whose initial employment offer meets the new definition continue to be casual employees under the FW Act.
Becoming A Permanent Employee
The Amendment Act adds a new entitlement to the National Employment Standards (NES) giving casual employees a pathway to becoming full-time or part-time (permanent) employee. This is also known as 'casual conversion'.
Your employer has to offer you as a casual to convert to full time or part-time when you:
- has worked for their employer for 12 months
- has worked a regular pattern of hours for at least the last 6 of those months on an ongoing basis
- could continue working those hours as a permanent employee without significant changes.
Some exceptions apply, including:
- As a casual, you have the right to request to convert to full-time or part-time (permanent) employment in some circumstances.
This applies if you are working for a small business for other casual employees – after your employer has decided not to make an offer for casual conversion.
For more information on working as a casual in an early childhood service, please read the following: Working As A Casual Educator In Childcare
Changes To Casual Employment – Industrial Relations Reforms, Fair Work Ombudsman