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Honolulu

Locally Engaged Staff Terms and Conditions of Employment









SEPTEMBER 2015


Table of Contents


1Introduction 4

2Terms of Employment 6

2.1Relationship to Australian Legislation 6

2.2Levels of Classification 6

2.3Employment Contracts 6

2.3.1Ongoing Employees 6

2.3.2Casual and Relief Employees 6

2.4Probation 6

2.5Probity Checks, Security Clearances and Identification 7

2.6Expatriate Employees – Visas 7

2.7Fitness for Duty 7

2.8Movement between work levels 7

2.9Review of Actions 7

3Remuneration 8

3.1Salary on Commencement 8

3.2Salary Reviews 8

3.3Currency of Payment 8

3.4Payment of Salary 8

3.5Taxation 8

3.6Superannuation Contributions 9

3.7U.S Social Security Contributions 9

3.8Principal Pension Scheme (PPS) 9

4Working Hours 10

4.1Hours of Duty 10

4.1.1Flex-time arrangements 10

4.2Part-time Work 11

4.3Public Holidays 11

4.4Excess Duty 11

4.5Payment for Excess Duty 11

4.6Time off in lieu 11

Staff who are approved to work additional duty may have the option to take TOIL instead of payment. TOIL is calculated on the same basis as Additional Duty pay, i.e. time and one half (1/2) for time worked in excess of 40 hours per week. It must be taken during the same two- (2) week payroll period in which the overtime occurred, and be approved by management in advance. 11

Subject to funds availability, staff will not be required to take TOIL in preference to payment for overtime. 11

5Performance 12

5.1Eligibility 12

5.2Performance reward 12

6 Leave 13

6.1Leave during Hours of Duty 13

6.2Recreation Leave 13

6.3Personal Leave 13

6.4 Advanced Leave 14

6.5Leave without Pay (LWOP) 14

6.6Family and Medical Leave 14

6.7Maternity Leave 14

6.8Parental Leave 15

6.9Total Leave to Care for a New Child 15

6.10Court Appearance/Jury Duty Leave 15

6.11Natural Disaster/ Regional Emergency Leave 15

6.12Unauthorised Leave 15

6.13Recall from Leave 16

6.14Leave to count as service 16

7 Allowances and Benefits 17

7.1Higher Duties Allowance 17

7.2On-Call Allowance 17

7.3Health Insurance 17

7.4First Aid Allowance 17

8Travel 18

8.1Official Travel 18

8.2Travel Allowance 18

8.3Travel and Time Off in Lieu 18

9Separation 19

9.1Resignation 19

9.2Retirement 19

9.3Redundancy 19

9.4Redundancy Benefits 19

9.5Termination by the Australian Consulate-General 20

9.6Dismissal (for misconduct) 20

9.7Death of an Employee 20

9.8Recovery of Debts on Termination of Employment 21

Glossary 22



1Introduction


Our local employees play a critical role in delivering the objectives of the Australian Government overseas. Our aim is to be competitive in relevant local labour markets to ensure that we can attract and retain good staff. These terms and conditions aim to support the achievement of our goals by providing a fair, flexible, rewarding and safe workplace to enable us to attract, retain, and develop our locally recruited workforce.

These terms and conditions incorporate applicable aspects of local labour law. Local labour law represents minimum standards, with these terms and conditions often reflecting conditions above the local labour law. We include additional conditions to ensure we stay competitive in the local labour market and provide some conditions that are not addressed in local labour laws. Where particular conditions of employment are absent in this document, the Human Resources Manual or Post Circulars, local labour law will apply.

The key principles of these terms and conditions are;


  1. fairness and equity;

  2. affordability – all terms and conditions must be financially sustainable;

  3. consultation – with staff and Agencies;

  4. natural justice – that due process and procedural fairness shall be afforded to all decisions made in relation to these terms and conditions.

These terms and conditions come into effect from September 2015 and apply for the three-year period to [September 2018, or until such time as a successor terms and conditions document comes into effect.

After appropriate consultation with staff and Agency management representatives these terms and conditions may be varied under the following circumstances;



  1. as required by local labour law;

  2. as directed by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), Canberra;

  3. in response to the Consulate-General’s operational requirements;

  4. as agreed between staff and Agency management representatives.

The authority to approve these terms and conditions rests with the Head of Mission (HOM) in consultation with DFAT Canberra, Agency Heads, and in accordance with HRM 2.7

These terms and conditions are supported by a series of administrative and HR policies and guidelines promulgated by DFAT and updated from time to time. The terms and conditions should be read together with the Locally Engaged Staff Human Resource Manual (LES HRM) and Post Circulars issued by Post Management.

The contents of these terms and conditions of employment and associated policies and guidelines do not constitute the terms of a contract of employment, express or implied, or the guarantee of any benefits.  These terms and conditions of employment should not be construed as a guarantee of continued employment. Regardless of any statement in these terms and conditions, employment with the Consulate-General is in an “at-will” capacity and either the employee or the Consulate-General may end the relationship at any time and for any reason.

These terms and conditions will be reviewed every three years in consultation with locally engaged staff through a Locally Engaged Staff (LES) Consultative Group. The LES Consultative Group is a group of locally engaged employees and Post Management representing each Agency. It is recognised by the Australian Consulate-General as a formal communication channel between employees and Post Management. It is the responsibility of LES to meet as often as they deem necessary.



2Terms of Employment

2.1Relationship to Australian Legislation


Employees are employed under section 74 of the Australian Public Service Act 1999, which allows an Agency Head, or their nominated delegate, on behalf of the Commonwealth, to engage persons overseas to perform duties overseas as employees. These employees are not Australian Public Service employees, and the terms and conditions of employment pertaining to Australian Public Service employees are excluded under this type of employment.

2.2Levels of Classification


Initial classification levels for positions are determined in accordance with the Work Level Standards (WLS) Classification Framework. Changes to the classification of individual positions requires an assessment of the position description and required capabilities and will only be made after consultation with Post Management, employees and, where they choose, employee representatives.

2.3Employment Contracts


Offers of employment will be made and accepted in writing. Employment offers must be signed before the employee commences duty.

2.3.1Ongoing Employees


Offers of ongoing employment will be made for an open ended employment period in the position named in the offer. A new offer of employment will be made for a new position following the successful recruitment of the staff member into that position. Ongoing employment contracts may be amended or terminated in accordance with the terms and conditions of employment and local labour law.

2.3.2Casual and Relief Employees


Casual employees are engaged for irregular and intermittent duties. They are appointed from time to time to fill ad hoc requirements. A casual employee may be appointed to cover short-term relief or perform tasks which cannot otherwise be distributed to existing employees. Casual employees are not entitled to all allowances and benefits as outlined in this document, instead, casual hourly rates will be paid and may attract a loading in lieu of these allowances and benefits.

To avoid doubt and without prejudice to any rights the parties may have under the contract, the employee acknowledges that upon the expiration of the contract the Australian Consulate-General is under no obligation whatsoever to extend all or any of the terms of the contract, enter into any further or other contract with the employee, or provide any further employment to the employee.


2.4Probation


Employment will be subject to a condition of satisfactory completion of a probationary period of three months. There is no probation period for casual employees. During the probationary period, either the employee or the Agency may terminate the employment for any reason. The employee will receive salary owing until the termination date, but is not entitled to any other payment in respect of termination. Should employment be terminated during probation for misconduct no notice is required.
Upon satisfactory completion of a probationary period, the probationary period is also included in the period of employment for accrued benefits of the employee.

2.5Probity Checks, Security Clearances and Identification


A probity check and/or Australian security clearance may be required as a pre-condition of employment, and revalidation reviews may need to be undertaken on a periodic basis. False statements made by the employee relating to the security clearance or probity check will be deemed to be a violation of the LES Code of Conduct.

2.6Expatriate Employees – Visas


For expatriate employees, employment at the Australian Consulate-General is conditional on the relevant authorities in the United States of America granting permission to enter and remain in the United States of America to work for the Consulate-General. If such permission to remain in the United States of America is refused or revoked or otherwise not renewed, the employee’s employment immediately terminates and the Consulate-General will only be obliged to pay any compensation or similar payment in respect of such termination in accordance with labour laws of the United States of America.

2.7Fitness for Duty


In certain cases, and in accordance with local labour law, the employer may require an employee to demonstrate fitness for duty for engagement in or continued employment in a position, particularly following an extended absence for medical reasons.

2.8Movement between work levels


Movement between position classification levels is possible if an employee applies for a position and is awarded that position on merit (either a higher or lower position) or if an employee accepts a redeployment offer to a lower position.

2.9Review of Actions


Where an employee disputes the interpretation of a term or condition of employment, the employee should refer the matter to the Senior Administrative Officer (SAO) in the first instance.

3Remuneration

3.1Salary on Commencement


Salary on the date of commencement is to be approved by the SAO and confirmed in a letter of offer, and will usually be at the first pay point of the level the position is classified in the relevant salary table. An employee may be engaged on a higher base salary within the existing position level, depending on their skills, knowledge and experience, relevant Agency budget, or local labour market conditions.

3.2Salary Reviews


A comprehensive salary review for each post will be conducted by LES HR Strategy and Services Section (LSS) in Canberra once every three years using the services of an outsourced expert to review salaries data in the local market where possible.

Every other year Head of Post (HOP) and SAO are responsible for determining whether salaries should be increased, in consultation with attached agencies and LSS in Canberra. In assessing the need for a general increase in LES salaries, post managers will need to take into account inflation and cost of living increases, salary movements in the local market, the post’s (including attached agencies') capacity to pay a salary increase, retention rates of existing staff, and each post's experience in recruiting suitable new staff. Thus annual increases should not be assumed. Any salary increases will need to be accommodated and sustained within agencies’ operating and out-year budgets, and approved by LSS and all relevant agency delegates.

The HOP and SAO may also consider putting a case to DFAT in Canberra due to exceptional and unexpected changes in local living conditions such as salary movements in the market linked to hyperinflation.

3.3Currency of Payment


All salary and related payments are calculated and paid in US dollars and paid into a US-based bank account.

3.4Payment of Salary


Employee salaries and other salary-related payments such as payment for excess duty (overtime) are paid fortnightly directly to the employee's personal bank account in accordance with the Australian Consulate-General’s payment procedures, which may be altered from time to time.

3.5Taxation


An employee will be required to establish their own liability to pay income tax, and any liability for taxation is the personal responsibility of the employee. The Australian Consulate-General takes no role in the withholding or submission of income taxation payments to any other taxation collecting authority. At the end of each financial year a Statement of Earnings will be issued to each employee.

Employees who are Australian residents, including those who hold dual citizenship, must complete a residency e-tool on the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) website. E-tool determinations will be filed on an employee’s personnel file, together with the information provided by the ATO on the basis of the determination. Employees must ensure that post records held in relation to their residency status for taxation purposes are kept up to date, and should re-complete the e-tool annually or when circumstances change. Employees will also sign the Australian Residency Tax Statement. The ATO regards a spouse of an Australian Public Service employee who is posted to the Consulate-General of Australia to Hawaii as an Australian resident for tax purposes. Australian Pay As You Go (PAYG) tax will not be withheld from an employee's salary. It is an employee's responsibility to make their own arrangements with payment of their income tax obligations to the ATO. In July each year a Statement of Earnings will be issued to each employee and a copy sent to the ATO.


3.6Superannuation Contributions


For Australian Residents for Tax purposes

In relation to an employee who is regarded by the ATO as an Australian resident for tax purposes, the Australian Consulate-General is required, in accordance with the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act 1992, to pay contributions to a complying superannuation fund on the employee's behalf. The employee will be required to either fill in a compliant AustralianSuper Application Form; or provide information on a current superannuation policy. The Consulate-General will calculate the contributions and make the payments directly to the relevant scheme. In relation to an employee who is regarded by the ATO as an Australian non-resident for tax purposes, the Consulate-General is not required to pay contributions to a complying superannuation fund on the employee's behalf.


3.7U.S Social Security Contributions


Upon application and provision of proof of tax filing, the Consulate-General will reimburse eligible staff members the employer’s share of social security and medicare taxes.

3.8Principal Pension Scheme (PPS)


Employees who have satisfactorily completed their probation period and are not members of the Australian Super scheme are eligible to join the Principal Pension Scheme (PPS).

Staff may opt to contribute up to 20% of their base salary (including HDA) to this scheme. The Consulate-General will match the staff member’s contribution up to a maximum of 5% of annual base salary (including HDA) plus fees.

There is no vesting period of any kind applying to membership of this scheme. Further information on the PPS is available from Human Resources.

4Working Hours


The Australian Consulate-General is committed to providing flexibility in working arrangements that promotes good work and life balance and supports operational effectiveness. From time to time employees may be required to work additional hours. Employees and their supervisors are expected to avoid situations where excessive working hours become routine. Supervisors are encouraged to work cooperatively with employees to ensure regular review of work practices, rigorous prioritisation, the use of effective time management techniques, and appropriate access to either flex time or time off in lieu to compensate for unavoidable periods where long hours have to be worked.

4.1Hours of Duty


Employees may be engaged on fixed or flexible hours depending on operational requirements. Employees are required to work 37 hours and 30 minutes per week, between Monday and Friday.

Employees on fixed hours are required to work between the hours of 08:00 and 16:30 on weekdays. Each employee is entitled to a daily lunch break of a minimum of 30 minutes between 12:00 and 14:00 and, at a minimum, is required to take a 30 minute break at the end of five hours’ work. An alternative lunch break will be arranged should the employee be unable to take lunch during the standard lunch period.

These hours of duty may be changed from time to time at the HOP’s discretion by advance notice in writing.

All employees must maintain a formal record of their time upon arrival at and departure from work each day. These records are to be made available to supervisors upon request.


4.1.1Flex-time arrangements


A flex time system is provided for hours worked in excess of 37.5 hours per week and under Additional Duty pay threshold. It is intended to provide some flexibility to vary attendance in order to meet fluctuating operational and personal requirements.

The flex time balance of employees must not exceed 15 hours at the end of any one flex time cycle. Staff may exceed 15 hours during the cycle however staff must actively manage their balance towards zero flex time during that cycle. Balances above 15 hours will not be credited forward to the next flex time cycle.

Flex time credit will not be allowed for the incidental time between staff arrival at the chancery and official opening hours at 0800hrs unless previously agreed by managers that an early arrival is operationally required.

Flex time credit will not be allowed for the incidental time between official closing hours at 16:30 and staff departure from the chancery unless previously agreed with managers that a late departure is operationally required or because staff members’ work require the completion of a priority task that day.

Staff must complete a flex time record sheet by the week following the end of the flex time cycle. Staff should record on the flex time record sheet the actual time started and finished work.

Staff should actively manage and record their flex time during a cycle, particularly if they are close to the 15 hour flex balance limit.

Supervisor’s approval is required for all flex time absences. Flex leave may be taken continuously with Recreation leave.

Flex time is applied at senior management’s sole discretion and it can be changed or stopped if required.


4.2Part-time Work


Employees may be able to negotiate part-time hours with their supervisor, to be approved by the relevant Agency delegate. Part-time employees are entitled to the same conditions as full-time employees on a pro rata basis (where applicable). Hours will be as established by the Agency head and advised in writing to the Administration section.

4.3Public Holidays


The Australian Consulate-General will observe a combination of 14 Australian and local public holidays as determined by the HOP. All employees, excluding casual employees, are entitled to be paid salary for any public holiday except where the public holiday falls within a period that the employee is taking leave without pay.

4.4Excess Duty


Employees may also be required on occasion to work additional time outside the normal working hours for which either payment for excess duty (overtime) or time off in lieu will apply when approved in advance by the employee’s supervisor.

Supervisors have a responsibility to minimise the working of excessive hours by their staff. Productivity is not measured in hours spent at the office. Excessive periods of Additional Duty hours can have serious consequences for health, morale and productivity.

Hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week which have been required in order to meet extraordinary operational requirements and have been approved in advance by the supervisor will attract Additional Duty pay for non-exempt employees. Additional Duty for non-exempt employees must be approved by the supervisor/Agency Head prior to time being worked and is to be funded by the authorising Agency. Additional Duty cannot be self-initiated.

Additional Duty payment for non-exempt employees will be at the rate of time and one half (1/2) for time worked outside normal working hours based on the employee's regular base rate of pay


4.5Payment for Excess Duty


Payment for approved overtime will be calculated as follows:

  1. 150 per cent of the normal hourly rate for overtime performed on normal working days

Overtime payments are made fortnightly in arrears with normal salary payments.

4.6Time off in lieu

Staff who are approved to work additional duty may have the option to take TOIL instead of payment. TOIL is calculated on the same basis as Additional Duty pay, i.e. time and one half (1/2) for time worked in excess of 40 hours per week. It must be taken during the same two- (2) week payroll period in which the overtime occurred, and be approved by management in advance.

Subject to funds availability, staff will not be required to take TOIL in preference to payment for overtime.




5Performance


All employees will participate in a performance management system and be required to enter into performance agreements on an annual basis. A mid-term and end-of-term review will be completed with the supervisor.

5.1Eligibility


Full-time and part-time employees who work for more than three months in any performance cycle shall participate in the performance management system. Temporary employees are not eligible for a performance reward. The employee shall be assessed on the basis of the substantive position they hold on the last day of the performance cycle.

5.2Performance reward


To be eligible for a performance reward an employee must have performed the duties of the position for at least 3 months and be employed by the Consulate-General on the last day of the performance cycle (31 March). Continuous periods of time spent in the same position and in the same agency, including periods of higher duties, secondment and temporary engagement, shall count towards eligibility for a performance reward.

Performance pay shall be based on the staff member’s base salary in their substantive position on the last day of the performance cycle. Employees who receive a ‘performing exceptionally’ or ‘performing well’ rating shall advance one increment. Employees who are already at the top increment for their level, at which their position is classified, shall receive two per cent of their annual base salary as at 31 March as a one-off performance bonus. The bonus shall not be included in the employee’s base salary.

Employees who receive a ‘requires development’ rating shall not be entitled to a pay point advancement or bonus.

6 Leave

6.1Leave during Hours of Duty


An employee may be granted leave from ordinary hours of duty under one of the following categories. The absence may be granted with or without pay as determined by the type of leave requested, subject to approval by the relevant Agency delegate.

6.2Recreation Leave


Employees are entitled to 23 working days paid recreation leave per annum (pro-rated for part time) which will accrue from their commencement date. Recreation leave will accrue each month to a maximum of 46 days.

Casual employees are not entitled to recreation leave.

An employee who has more than 46 days’ recreation leave credits on 1 January in any year will be required to make arrangements with their supervisor to reduce their recreation leave balance to not more than 46 days by no later than 30 June of that year. An employee who has more than 46 days’ recreation leave credits on 30 June of any year will be deemed to be on leave unless a prior arrangement has been agreed with the Agency delegate.

Employees may access accrued recreation leave with the prior authorisation of their supervisor. Supervisors must process requests for recreation leave promptly and, subject to operational requirements, will not unreasonably decline requests for recreation leave.

Employees are encouraged to take their full recreation leave entitlement each calendar year. Supervisors are responsible for enabling employees to take this leave by effective planning within their work area.

An employee who is ill or injured for one day or longer during a period of recreation leave and who produces a medical certificate may apply for personal leave. Recreation leave will be re-credited to the extent of the period of the personal leave granted.

In the event of resignation, retirement, redundancy or expiry of contract at any point throughout the year, all unused recreation leave credits will be paid to the employee and included in the termination payment.

6.3Personal Leave


Employees are entitled to 18 days of paid personal leave per annum (pro-rated for part time), which will be accrued and credited monthly, which can be used for personal illness or injury or caring for a family member.

Casual employees are not entitled to personal leave.

On the completion of continuous employment for a period of 12 months, the personal leave balance for the following year will be credited on the anniversary of engagement without any limitation in addition to any residual balance not used from the previous year/s.

Any personal leave which has not been used by the employee at the time they cease working for the Australian Consulate-General will be not be paid out in the final termination payment. Personal leave cannot be taken by two employees to care for the same person at the same time.

An employee who, without prior approval from their supervisor, takes personal leave will notify their supervisor prior to 09:00on the day(s) of absence.

A medical certificate from a registered health practitioner must be produced for absences exceeding three consecutive working days. Where it is not practicable for the employee to obtain a medical certificate, the employee must provide a statutory declaration stating the reason for absence and the reason that a medical certificate could not be obtained. The total number of personal leave days allowed without a medical certificate in an accrual year is five.

An employee who has exhausted all of their personal leave credits may apply for leave without pay after 12 months’ service. Applications for personal leave without pay must include a medical certificate.

6.4 Advanced Leave


Up to a total of five (5) days recreation and/or personal leave may be taken in advance of entitlement (including during a staff member's first year of employment).

6.5Leave without Pay (LWOP)


LWOP is offered to cover special circumstances not met by other forms of leave. Subject to operational requirements, LWOP may be taken upon the recommendation of the Agency Head and approval of the Supervisor. Examples of the circumstances under which approval may be granted include:

  1. to accompany a spouse on a short-term posting;

  2. to appear as a witness in legal proceedings;

  3. to perform military or emergency community services duty;

  4. to attend to extensive damage to one’s house or contents;

  5. war service sick leave; or

  6. circumstances as considered appropriate in consultation between the Agency Head and the SAO.

6.6Family and Medical Leave


Subject to certain conditions as prescribed under the Federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), staff who have worked for at least 12 months for the Consulate-General will be provided with the following job-protected leave:

  • Up to 12 weeks leave, in a 12-month period following a specific event, is guaranteed to assist in recovery from a serious medical condition or to care for family members suffering from a serious medical condition.

Family and Medical leave (FML) is to be taken from a combination of accrued personal and recreation leave credits and LWOP. Appropriate certificates and/or documentation substantiating the leave request may be required.

Wherever possible, approval for FML should be sought in advance from the relevant Agency Head.

All leave taken as part of FML, including LWOP, will count as service.

The Consulate-General will continue to pay the employer contribution to medical insurance for all FML, including for LWOP, for three additional months following the month during which you became disabled, or for the period of paid leave, whichever is the longer (see 7.3).


6.7Maternity Leave


An employee who has completed 12 months’ service is entitled to 8 weeks’ paid leave for pregnancy, childbirth and related conditions (maternity leave). This leave must be taken all at once and may be taken in conjunction with Parental Leave, Personal Leave, Recreation Leave and Leave Without Pay in accordance with the Family Medical Leave Act.

6.8Parental Leave


An employee who has completed 12 months’ service is entitled to 4 weeks’ paid leave following the birth, adoption or placement of a foster child into the employee’s care. The leave is to be taken all at once within 12 months after the birth, adoption or placement of a foster child and may be taken in conjunction with Maternity Leave (if applicable), Personal Leave, Recreation Leave and Leave Without Pay in accordance with the Family Medical Leave Act.

Should both parents be employed by the Consulate-General, a total period of four weeks’ Parental Leave shall be approved for the birth, adoption or placement of the foster child but may be shared between both employees and must be used all at once within 12 months after the birth, adoption or placement of the foster child.


6.9Total Leave to Care for a New Child


Staff may be approved leave (to be taken from accrued personal leave balance, recreation leave or LWOP) to care for a new child (by birth or adoption). Approval is subject to operational requirements. A maximum absence of 52 weeks is permitted and this is inclusive of any paid maternity or parental leave, personal leave, recreation leave and LWOP.

Leave taken within the 52 week period including paid maternity or parental leave, personal leave, recreation leave and LWOP greater than 16 weeks will not be job protected. Staff members will be required to pay the Employer contribution during any period of LWOP not considered Family and/or Medical Leave if they wish to maintain membership in the Consulate-General’s medical plan.


6.10Court Appearance/Jury Duty Leave


Staff required to appear in court as a federal, state or local government witness or to serve jury duty will be excused from their normal duties on full pay for the duration of their service. The staff member is to provide their immediate supervisor with as much notice as possible of the required court service, and court papers relating to the service are to be provided to Human Resources.

If staff receive compensation from the court in instances where paid leave to appear in court was granted, such payment is to be endorsed over to the relevant Agency within one week of returning to work minus any deductions for required expenses.

Staff required to appear in court for any other reason, such as in the capacity of a plaintiff or defendant in a civil case, are to use personal leave for the absence from work.

6.11Natural Disaster/ Regional Emergency Leave


Staff affected by a natural disaster or highly threatening weather situations, may be granted leave in accordance with the provisions applying to US Federal Government employees as announced in the local media. This leave is additional to personal leave and recreation leave.

6.12Unauthorised Leave


Where a staff member is absent from duty without approval, the staff member will be deemed to be on recreation leave until the supervisor is informed of the circumstances of the absence or the staff member resumes duty.

In circumstances where recreation leave credits have been exhausted, and the staff member remains on unauthorised absence, the staff member will be placed on LWOP.

Where leave has been deemed as recreation leave for absences which are subsequently found to be covered under FMLA or personal leave provisions, recreation leave credits will be re-credited after approval of personal leave has been obtained.

Depending on the circumstances of the absence, the Delegate for the engagement of LES may commence action to terminate the employment of staff who are absent from duty without approval.


6.13Recall from Leave


Staff recalled to duty from leave will have all of the leave which they have not used re-credited and will be entitled to reimbursement of all incidental and travel expenses reasonably and verifiably incurred for themselves and their immediate family (i.e. - spouse/partner and children).

6.14Leave to count as service


Any periods of paid leave will count as service for all purposes.

Periods of unpaid leave will not count as service for any purpose, other than where they have been taken as part or all of any FML, the guaranteed 16 weeks of maternity leave or for compulsory military service or war service sick leave.




7 Allowances and Benefits

7.1Higher Duties Allowance


An employee may be temporarily assigned duties at a higher classification level. Decisions on the granting of higher duties allowance will be made on the basis of a clearly established operational need.

An employee who is temporarily assigned duties at a higher classification level for ten continuous working days or more will be paid an allowance for the total period of those duties.

The rate of higher duties allowance payable to an employee will be the difference between the employee’s current salary and the first pay point of the LES classification level at which the employee is temporarily assigned duties.

In order to be paid higher duties allowance, the employee must perform all, or a substantial percentage of the duties of the senior position. The relevant Agency delegate may consider partial payment of higher duties allowance for partial performance of the duties of the position if appropriate.


7.2On-Call Allowance


Employees who are required to be available on a stand-by basis, for example during a consular emergency, will be paid an allowance of:

  1. USD 15.00 for each standard working day they are on-call; and

  2. USD 20.00 per day for the weekends and public holidays they are on-call.

7.3Health Insurance


In accordance with State labour law, all staff (including part-time and in a probation period), employed for a continuous period of at least four (4) consecutive weeks, who work a minimum of 20 hours per week, are eligible to join the Consulate-General’s Kaiser Permanente Group Plan insurance scheme in accordance with information made available by the insurance provider.

The Consulate-General will pay 100% of the cost of the standard, “least cost” insurance plan for the employee only. Any additional costs over the standard plan e.g. drug, dental, etc, must be paid by the member of staff. Alternatively, an employee with a spouse and/or dependent children may elect to insure themselves and their spouse/children where the Consulate-General pays 90% of the total premium for the standard “least cost” insurance plan and the employee pays 10%.

The Consulate-General will pay the plan contribution for the duration of a staff member’s employment with the Consulate-General, including for periods of LWOP of less than 22 continuous working days and periods of LWOP covered by FML (see paragraphs 6.5-6.6) or as otherwise required by local labour law.

7.4First Aid Allowance


Consulate-General staff appointed as First Aid Officers will be required to undertake training to obtain, and maintain as current, a registered first aid certificate (St John's Ambulance or equivalent, such as Hawaii Red Cross CPR and basic First Aid). Appointed staff will be granted leave to attend the appropriate courses and will be reimbursed any costs associated with the course or costs associated with maintaining their certificate. An allowance as determined by the Consulate-General will be paid to such employees. The allowance is currently USD 30.00 per month.

8Travel

8.1Official Travel


Official travel is based on reasonableness, flexibility and personal accountability. Employees are expected to neither gain nor lose financially as a result of undertaking official travel. Employees must abide by the standards and class of travel and accommodation as advised by their relevant Agency Head, taking account of budget considerations and agency practice.

For international flights where the actual flight time on a direct route is more than eight hours, a rest period is available for a maximum of one day at the destination (including weekends).


8.2Travel Allowance


A travel allowance to cover the cost of accommodation, meal(s) and incidental expenses will be made available to an employee who undertakes travel on official business and is required to be absent from home overnight.

Rates of travel allowance are the same as those of DFAT’s non-SES Abased employees and may be updated from time to time to reflect movements in accommodation and meal costs.


8.3Travel and Time Off in Lieu


Travel, where possible, should be undertaken during normal business hours. Where travel is undertaken outside the normal bandwidth of working hours, employees are entitled to accrue time off in lieu. Employees are not entitled to overtime payments to compensate for travel time outside the normal bandwidth of working hours.

Time off in lieu must be agreed between the supervisor and employee before travel is undertaken, ideally on formation of the travel itinerary. Should the arrangements be unsatisfactory to either party, the need for travel should be revisited.

Time off in lieu for interstate or international travel will be negotiated with the supervisor, prior to travel, where that travelling time takes place outside of normal working hours. Time off in lieu for travel will be capped at one day.

9Separation


Employees may cease employment with the Australian Consulate-General in one of the ways specified in this Section.

On cessation of employment, in addition to any payments required under local labour law, an employee will be paid in full for all outstanding entitlements including salary, accrued and unused recreation leave.


9.1Resignation


Where an employee resigns from service with the Australian Consulate-General they will be required to provide, in writing to the Agency delegate, four weeks' notice of their intention to resign. In certain circumstances, management may consider a shorter period of notice.

9.2Retirement


There is no required age of retirement under the law applying to employment in Hawaii. LES intending to retire should provide post management with four weeks written notice of their intention to retire.

9.3Redundancy


Employees may be made redundant in the case of a restructure or other changes affecting the Agency or the Australian Consulate-General, including where such restructure or change results in:

  1. an employee's position no longer being required;

  2. an employee's duties or position being substantially changed such that the employee is no longer qualified to perform the role;

  3. the position has been reclassified; or

  4. an employee's position is no longer funded,

  5. and the employee is unable to be redeployed.

If an employee is made redundant because the position they hold has been modified or reclassified, the employee is encouraged to apply for the modified or re-classified position. Where the employee has been unsuccessful in their application, where possible, the employee will be offered re-deployment to a similar position at the employee's classification (or at a lower classification) if one is vacant.

If an employee accepts an offer of redeployment at a lower classification, the employee's salary will be reduced to the salary of the lower classification, at the highest pay point, at the time of redeployment. If an employee has been offered redeployment to a position of comparable duties as determined by the employee's supervisor at the same classification and declines to be redeployed, the employee will not be entitled to a termination payment under the Redundancy Benefits section of this document.

9.4Redundancy Benefits


Staff who have completed at least one year of continuous service and are declared excess, cannot be redeployed to a comparable position, or who do not agree to be deployed to a comparable position, will be entitled to a severance payment.

The amount of severance payment will be equal to:



  1. one week's salary for each year of employment at the Consulate-General;

  2. for an incomplete year, salary at pro-rata for each completed period of 3 months, being counted as a quarter of one year; and

  3. one additional week's salary for each year of employment at the Consulate-General in excess of 10 years.

Severance payment will be calculated on the basis of the annual actual base salary of the staff member at the time of their separation.

Severance payment will be calculated on a pro rata basis for any period where the staff member has worked part-time hours.

Severance pay is not payable to staff whose contracts have expired or whose employment has been voluntarily terminated.

For periods of employment to count as service there must be no breaks between the periods of employment, except where the break in service is less than one month, or as provided for within the provisions for paid and unpaid leave.

Any period of employment, ceased by way of retirement on grounds of invalidity, dismissal, termination of probationary appointment for reasons of unsatisfactory service, voluntary retirement, or the payment of an employer-financed retirement benefit, will not count as service for severance purposes.

Absences from work which do not count as service for any purpose will not count as service for severance purposes.


9.5Termination by the Australian Consulate-General


The decision to terminate the employment of LES on any grounds rests in Canberra with Chief People Officer and the Assistant Secretary of the Overseas Operations and Services Branch. For under-performance issues post management should attempt counselling, a performance improvement plan, and/or, in appropriate circumstances, seek professional medical advice (e.g. in the case of a physical or mental disability requiring a reasonable accommodation) before embarking on dismissal. Before undertaking on any of these procedures, post management will ensure that the methods used for counselling, monitoring performance or seeking medical advice are themselves in accordance with local labour laws.

This policy also applies to cases where the employment of an LES should be terminated during or at the end of the probationary period. Probation will not be extended if an employee has not performed to the required level during the probation period.

In the rare case, where action to have an LES removed from the workplace (such as in the case of misconduct) action will be taken expeditiously by post management, the HOP may suspend a staff member with full pay pending review by Canberra.

9.6Dismissal (for misconduct)


The Australian Consulate-General may terminate the employee's employment if they behave in a manner which, in the opinion of the Consulate-General, contravenes either the LES Code of Conduct, the criminal laws of the United States of America or any other lawful and reasonable direction given to the employee by the employer or the employer’s representative.

Where an employee is terminated under this provision the employee may be liable to instant dismissal, without payment of salary in lieu of notice. All other accrued entitlements will be paid to the employee.


9.7Death of an Employee


If an employee dies while employed by the Australian Consulate-General all financial entitlements which have accrued, but not previously been paid to the employee, will be paid in full to the employee’s nominated beneficiary, next of kin or legal representative. Before any payment is made, the next of kin of an employee will be required to prove their eligibility under local labour law to the satisfaction of the Consulate-General.

9.8Recovery of Debts on Termination of Employment


Upon termination of employment, if the employee is or becomes indebted to the Australian Consulate-General, the Consulate-General will have the right to retain and offset against the amount of indebtedness the whole or any part of the monies then or thereafter becoming due to the employee. Each employee shall be required to execute an acknowledgement of the Consulate General’s right of offset upon hire for placement in the employee’s personnel file.

Glossary




“agreed hours”

the hours of work agreed in full-time, part-time and casual work schedules, and the agreed hours within the bandwidth that standard hours will be worked.

“Agency”

the departments or agencies of the Government of Australia which have representation at the Post.

“Agency delegate”

the nominated delegate of the Agency Head.

“Agency Head”

means the most senior representative of the Agency

“Australian Consulate-General”

the official diplomatic offices for the Government of Australia representation in the United States of America.

“casual employee”

an employee who is employed from time to time for short periods e.g. for relief work performing duties which are irregular or intermittent.

“child”

a child, adopted or foster child, step child or ex-nuptial child of the employee or their partner.

“contract”

a legal document setting out the employment terms and conditions reflecting the formal statement of the mutually agreed employment provisions.

“days”

calendar days unless otherwise specified.

“DFAT”

the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

“delegate”

the person with the official delegation to approve an action or request.

“dependant”

  • the partner of the employee

  • a child of the employee who is under (18/21) years of age

  • a child or a parent of the employee or their partner who is wholly or substantially dependent upon the employee

or any person the employing Agency Head or their delegate deems to be a dependant.

“employee”

a person engaged by the Agency Head under section 74 of the Public Service Act 1999 irrespective of citizenship or residency including as an ongoing, non-ongoing, casual or fixed-term employee.

“employee representative”

any person whom the employee(s) nominates or elects as a representative.

“employer”

the appropriate Agency Head delegated under section 74 of the Public Service Act 1999 to engage employees in accordance with the Prime Minister’s Directive on the Guidelines for the Management of the Australian Government Presence Overseas.

“family”

  • a spouse or de facto partner of the employee irrespective of gender (including a former spouse or de facto partner);

  • a child (including an adopted child, a step child, a foster child or an ex-nuptial child), parent, grandparent, grandchild or sibling of the employee.

  • a child (including an adopted child, a step child, a foster child or an ex-nuptial child), parent, grandparent, grandchild or sibling of the employee’s spouse or de facto partner

  • traditional kinship where there is a relationship or obligation under the customs and traditions of the community or group to which the employee belongs.

“Consulate”

the Australian Consulate-General.

“Consulate-General”

the Australian ConsulateGeneral.

“HOP”

the Head of Post

”immediate family”

  • spouse (including a former spouse, a de facto spouse and a former de facto spouse)

  • child or an adult child (including an adopted child, a step child or an ex-nuptial child), parent, grandparent

  • grandchild of an employee or an employee’s recognised spouse or partner

  • a brother or a sister of an employee.

“local labour law”

the United States of America legislation that covers the protection and rights of employees, namely (but not exclusively limited to) the:

  • Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA)[USA];

  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)[USA];

  • Australian Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 [Australia];

  • Choice of Superannuation Fund Arrangements [Australia];

  • Civil Rights Act, Title VII [USA];

  • Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) [USA];

  • Equal Pay Act (EPA) [USA];

  • Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) [USA];

  • Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) [USA] including updates;

  • Federal Rehabilitation Act [USA];

  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)[USA];

  • Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act)[USA];

  • Public Service Act (1999)[Australia];

  • Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act 1992 [Australia]

  • Superannuation (Productivity Benefit) Act 1988 [Australia];

  • Uniformed Services Employment & Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA)[USA]; and

  • White Cane Act [USA].

“month”

a calendar month unless otherwise specified.

“non-ongoing employee”

an employee who is engaged for:

  • a specified term; or

  • the duration of a specified task.

“ongoing employee”

an employee engaged without an end date of employment.

“partner”

in relation to a person who is a member of a couple, the other member of the couple (including a former spouse or de facto partner).

“part-time employee”

an employee who is engaged for an agreed number of hours per fortnight as either an ongoing or non-ongoing employee.

“pay point”

the salary point within the salary range for a classification level which is the substantive salary payable to an employee.

“Post”

the Consul-General of Australia to Hawaii, United States of America.

“Post Management”

unless otherwise defined, generally consists of the HOM, Agency Heads and the SAO and may be represented by the SAO in personnel matters.

“SAO”

the DFAT Senior Administrative Officer.

“supervisor”

an employee or Agency representative with the responsibility for managing or supervising employees.

“year”

a calendar year unless otherwise specified.



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