CORONAVIRUS — PUBLIC
275. Hon PETER COLLIER to the Leader of the House
representing the Premier:
I refer to the Premier's
comments in the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday, 18 March 2020 that he had no
plans at that time for non-frontline public servants to operate from home to
prevent the spread of coronavirus.
(1) Does the Premier now have plans
for non-frontline public servants to work from home?
(2) If no to (1), why not?
(3) Is the
Premier aware that government departments and government trading enterprises
have taken it upon themselves to have non-frontline public servants work from
home to stop the spread of coronavirus?
(4) If yes to
(3), what departments and GTEs is the Premier aware of that have non-frontline
public servants working from home?
I thank the honourable member for
some notice of the question.
public sector is essential and open for business, but it is not business as
usual. In line with the Australian government response, the Western Australian
government is implementing staged measures, with business changes already
affecting some public sector employees and further measures anticipated,
including changed service delivery arrangements.
Different agencies are at different
stages of capability and readiness to transition to different ways of working
and delivering services. Public sector CEOs have been advised to continue
preparing and moving their organisations and employees to perform their work
differently, as required, whether that is working as they do now to deliver
frontline services, working from home or another location, or being deployed to
work in areas of greatest need. Not all employees will be able to work remotely
or from home.
For the foreseeable future, the
Premier has directed the public sector to focus on delivering critical
frontline services and support functions, driving the state's COVID-19
response, and preparing for Western Australia's economic and social
recovery and resilience. To position the public sector to provide the best
service to the state in this time, CEOs are continuing to work closely with
their ministers to ensure that changes to services, programs, initiatives and
working arrangements are agreed and happen in an orderly and planned way.
have been told to make decisions in the best interests of their agencies and
employees, and in accordance with directions and guidance provided by the
Public Sector Commissioner, public sector labour relations and the Department