RLC in the Media: Is It Legal To Skip Work Due To Bushfire Smoke?

Is it legal to refuse to come into work due to health concerns? 

Sarah Basford reports for Lifehacker

Sharmilla Bargon, head of the employment practice at Redfern Legal Centre, speaks to Lifehacker about what the law says you can do if the poor air quality's got you feeling under the weather. 

“If an employee is sick then they are sick, it doesn't matter the reason," Sharmilla says.

According to NSW's Work Health and Safety Act 2011 No 10, an employer must supply "the provision and maintenance of a work environment without risks to health and safety" where practical.

If on these days you have a flexible working situation, you could ask to work from home or ask your employer to provide you with P2 masks, which have been found to provide protection from the smoke when fitted properly. 

Read the full article here (Lifehacker, 19 December 2019)