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Thursday March 4, 2021

The WA Industrial Relations Commission has delivered police officers two additional leave days after it handed down its decision to conclude industrial agreement negotiations.

The two additional leave days can be used at any time, do not need to be pre-programmed and must be used annually and were awarded after a five-day hearing in December last year.

In the process of delivering his decision, the Senior Commissioner also registered the Police Officer Industrial Agreement 2020 bringing to an end two years of negotiations and bargaining. The new agreement is now in place and will expire on 30 June 2021.

WAPU Acting President Mick Kelly said the decision improved existing entitlements and there was no loss of conditions.

“While certainly the umpire’s decision could have been better, the two days additional leave is an increase to current conditions. Importantly, it must be noted that the WA Police Force and the State Government argued that police officers should not get any additional leave,” Mr Kelly said.

“During the hearing, we presented evidence from a range of current and former serving police officers which was essential to our argument that policing is unique, demanding and, at times, traumatic, which was accepted by the Senior Commissioner.

“What was weighed against our argument was the Government’s submissions about the forecast of a depressed State economy coming out of COVID-19.”

Mr Kelly said the Union’s negotiations had been significantly hampered by the State Wages Policy.

"Work has begun on trying to change the State Wages Policy which has been a major stumbling block over the past four years. As part of our recently released Pre-Election Submission we have asked for a policy which is fair, equitable and allows for meaningful, open negotiations – something which has not occurred for some time,” Mr Kelly said.