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Health Minister Must Guarantee Compensation For Health Workers


Dr Tim Read, the Victorian Greens Spokesperson for Health, has today renewed his calls on the state government to ensure health workers are protected by workers compensation during the COVID-19 crisis.

Earlier this year the Greens introduced a bill that would amend the Workplace Injury Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2013 to provide a presumption for workers compensation for workers with an elevated risk of being exposed to the virus.

And today, following calls from thousands of health workers for guaranteed WorkCover, the Greens have sent a letter to Health Minister Jenny Mikakos calling on her to either support the Greens’ bill through parliament or commit to introducing her own.

Victorian Greens spokesperson for health, Dr Tim Read, said it was clear months ago that health workers would need guaranteed cover due to their increased risk of being infected with the virus.

Nurses, paramedics and other health workers have an elevated risk of contracting COVID-19, and yet if they fall sick they may face drawn-out legal arguments to prove that they caught the disease at work rather than on public transport or while grocery shopping.

Quotes attributable to Victorian Greens spokesperson for health, Tim Read MP:

"We expect our nurses and doctors to tend to coughing COVID-19 patients, so they shouldn’t have to worry about whether they will be compensated for lost income if they get sick.

"We’ve already introduced a bill to parliament, we just need the State Government to get on board so that health staff feel properly supported when they turn up to work."

-- ENDS --

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Dr Tim Read
Greens MP for Brunswick
20 August 2020
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