Release type: Joint Media Release


Paid leave for family and domestic violence starts now


The Hon Tony Burke MP
Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations
Minister for the Arts
The Hon Amanda Rishworth MP
Minister for Social Services

Millions of Australian workers will have a new right to ten days of paid family and domestic violence leave under Albanese Government changes that take effect tomorrow. 

From February 1, at least seven million employees who work for large or medium businesses – including casuals - will have access to this new entitlement. 

This is an important measure to support workers – overwhelmingly women – to leave violent relationships. 

Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations Tony Burke said paid family and domestic violence leave was a long overdue change. 

“Workers should never have to choose between their safety and wages,” Minister Burke said. 

“Paid family and domestic violence leave is a workplace entitlement that will save lives. 

“The measure will allow victims of family violence to take time off work without losing income and without losing their jobs.” 

"The Government is working closely with stakeholders and the Fair Work Ombudsman to ensure employers and employees have appropriate support to understand the new obligations and rights", the Minister said. 

Measures introduced with the legislation prevent any mention of family and domestic violence leave on a payslip. 

Small businesses have an extra six months to adjust to the change, meaning the start date for those employees will be August 1. Millions more workers will be able to access the entitlement then. 

Minister for Social Services Amanda Rishworth said the Australian Government is committed to providing the leadership and the investment to help end family, domestic and sexual violence. 

“For a long time we've assumed family and domestic violence is something that just affects someone's home life and is something that happens outside of the workplace. But we know it has a huge interface with work,” Minister Rishworth said. 

“One woman dies every ten days in Australia at the hands of their former or current partner – these women are often employed and are in our workplaces. 

“Employers have an increasingly important role here. The connection with work, the payment of wages, is really important in keeping stability in the lives of those experiencing violence when they are attempting to leave a domestic violence situation. 

“Family and domestic violence leave is one extra layer of support for those women and children experiencing violence. The Labor Albanese Government is committed to keeping women and children safe and achieving our goal of ending violence against them within one generation.”

If you or someone you know is affected by sexual assault, domestic or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit