Minister for Defence Personnel Dan Tehan has welcomed recent changes to legislation, saying Australia’s 39,000 Reservists will benefit.
Under amendments to the Defence Reserve Service (Protection) Act 2001, all Reserve service is now classified as ‘protected’ under the act, which Minister Tehan said will give greater certainty to Reserve members about their rights when rendering service in the Australian Defence Force.
"These provisions will provide greater protections to Reserve members undertaking ADF service," the minister said.
“Reservists are integral to the ADF’s workforce capability, and these changes will enhance the support provided by the Reserve component of the Defence workforce.”
The changes will provide ADF Reservists protection for when they are absent from civilian employment or academic studies to undertake Reserve duty.
“Reserve members will not be deprived of their civilian work unfairly and Reserve members have the right to be absent from their civilian workplace without consequence while rendering defence service," Minister Tehan said.
“Education providers will also be required to make reasonable adjustments to accommodate the absence of Reserve members on ADF service."
Changes have also been made to better protect Reservists against harassment and victimisation in civilian workplaces and against discrimination in business partnerships, with penalties for employers and business partners who discriminate on the basis of Reserve service.