National

COVID-19 pandemic leave payments for WA

By AAP Newswire

West Australians unable to work while in COVID-19 quarantine will be eligible for a payment under a deal struck with the federal government.

The $1500 pandemic leave disaster payment is available to workers who cannot earn an income because they must self-isolate, quarantine or care for someone with COVID-19.

Workers instructed to stay home by WA Health and not receiving paid leave or other Commonwealth payments could be eligible.

Recipients could also include the parent or guardian of a child aged under 16 who is a close contact or has tested positive for COVID-19.

Individuals are ineligible if they are receiving earnings from work, the JobKeeper payment or any other form of income support.

People can claim the payment again if their self-isolation, quarantine or caring period is longer than 14 days.

WA's government will fund payments to eligible temporary visa holders, with all other payments funded by the Commonwealth.

"The message is clear - should you become sick with COVID-19 or have to care for someone with COVID-19, then you should absolutely not be working or considering returning to work until you have the all clear," Premier Mark McGowan said.

"People in these circumstances who do not have support arrangements and are eligible will be supported by this pandemic leave disaster payment."

The payment is already available in Victoria and Tasmania.

More than $13.3 million in payments have been made for about 9000 granted claims since August 6.

Federal Labor has previously called for all states to receive the payments to guard against outbreaks such as those seen in Victoria.

The Australian Council of Trade Unions has called for workers to be compensated at normal rates of pay and the scheme administered through payroll systems.