In Australia it has been necessary to enact specific provisions into industrial and employment laws to ensure workplace protection and coverage of police officers because at common law police officers have not been regarded as employees. Police unions in Australia have emerged as strong industrial players and have secured a range of terms and conditions of employment which do not apply to the broader workforce. One area not often considered is the interaction of workers compensation laws and sick leave entitlements. This paper investigates the entitlements of Australian police officers to these benefits against the historical background of industrial laws. It concludes that there is no uniformity in coverage for workers compensation and sick leave and that the publicly available data in relation to absence from work of police officers due to sickness is generally incomplete and presents challenges for crossjurisdictional comparisons.
Guthrie, Robert, 2009, WP 62 - The industrial relations of sick leave and workers compensation for police officers in Australia, National Research Centre for OHS Regulation, Canberra