Woolworths extend paid leave to volunteer firefighters

Woolworths employees volunteering with rural fire service agencies have been granted extended paid leave by the company, in the wake of catastrophic fires burning across New South Wales, Victoria and around Australia

The Woolworths Group announced late last month that paid leave entitlements for team members (covered by an Enterprise Agreement) would be extended to four weeks paid leave, up from their existing two week policy.

Employees on salary could also seek to have this extended to an uncapped paid leave (subject to approval), while volunteering.

The company, in partnership with The Salvation Army, have also raised close to $1.3 million to aid and support the recovery effort.

Woolworths Group CEO Brad Banducci said a number of employees were volunteering with brigades across Australia and the fires had claimed one of their team members.

“The ferocity of this year’s bushfire season has been visible to us all, and has tragically taken the life of one of our own team,” he said.

“In support of their community spirit, and with the inevitability of more challenges in the weeks and months ahead, we have made the decision to extend paid leave entitlements for our EA team members volunteering in the rural fire services.”

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