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  • 16-Jan-2019 14:10 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    The highly anticipated $632 million Stage 2 Redevelopment of Campbelltown Hospital is now one step closer to reality with the planning and designing phase of the redevelopment underway. The upgrade will bring state of the art healthcare facilities and amenities to the Campbelltown region, which will rank it among the leading hospitals in Australia.

    A computer generated fly through video has been produced, which showcases both the internal and external designs of the hospital.


  • 13-Dec-2018 13:46 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    The Football Federation Association has today announced that the combined United for Macarthur and South-West Sydney FC bid will become one of two new teams to join the national competition.

    The United for Macarthur and South-West Sydney FC bids were shortlisted in June as contenders for two new teams in an expanded A-League.

    They joined forces in August, combining their individual strengths to submit a single bid that would unite Sydney’s south-west community.

    Mayor George Brticevic said today’s announcement was a win for the entire region that would benefit not only football players and fans, but the economy and community.

    “We’re excited that the months of hard work by everyone involved in this bid have paid off,” Cr Brticevic said.

    “This is a win for Sydney’s south-west community that will benefit present and future players, who will no longer have to leave their area to pursue their chosen sport at an elite level.

    “It will also bring investment to the region, not only around the team, but because of the opportunity to showcase the benefits of investing in our region to a national audience.

    “We’re proud that Campbelltown Sports Stadium will be the home of the new A-League team and we look forward to continuing to work hard in the months ahead in preparation for the 2020-2021 season.”

    Walker Corporation Executive Chairman Lang Walker, who supported the joint bid as a strategic partner, said he was thrilled with the result.

    “South-west Sydney is one of the fastest growing regions in the country,” Mr Walker said.

    “It makes sense that this rapidly expanding community should have a football team to call its own,” he said.

    “I look forward to continuing to support the club as it prepares to field a team in time for the 2020-2021 season.”

    Gino Marra, Director Potentia Capital Finance Group who is also a strategic partner of the bid, said they are elated with the decision.

    “Words cannot explain how our team is feeling. Over the last six months the local community has been asking us if ‘we’ will be successful. This shows that our community has taken ownership of this club already and I believe this is what has got us across the line,” Mr Marra said.

    “I would like to personally thank Mayor George Brticevic, Campbelltown Council and Lang Walker for all their hard work as well as our bid team who have worked extremely hard,” he said.

    “Everyone who worked on this bid believed in it, believes in our community and that’s why I believe we have been successful. Now the hard work begins.”

    Click here to view the original article.  


  • 26-Nov-2018 14:21 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    The HSBC Sydney 7s are coming to Western Sydney and we are celebrating by giving away two double passes to Spotless Stadium's Skydeck where you can catch all the action from your premium allocated seats.

    Tell us in 25 words or less "What you think Western Sydney's best kept secret is?" for your chance to win. Entries are to be sent to abrisot@wsbc.org.au by 5.00pm Friday 18th January 2019, to be eligible to enter*.

    Having had three successful years at Allianz Stadium in Sydney, the hugely popular HSBC Sydney 7s tournament will light up Sydney's West over three action-packed days from February 1-3.

    Upgrade your Sydney 7s experience and soak up the atmosphere with premium seats, amazing views and great hospitality from just $99!

    As an exclusive offer, quote WSBC for a 10% discount on all hospitality packages.

    To book call 1800 619 181 or email hospitality@rugby.com.au

    *T's & C's apply


  • 22-Nov-2018 18:29 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)


    Don’t miss out!

    Contact the ATC team today to book your next raceday or corporate event:

    Raceday hospitality: hospitality@theATC.com.au

    Corporate functions: info@eventsbyatc.com.au

    or call 1300 729 668.


  • 22-Nov-2018 10:33 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Northcott’s purpose is to build an inclusive society where people with disability can live the life they choose.

    Learning your child has a disability can be a huge shock, so Northcott wants to be there from day one. Northcott’s services include support in the form of the provision of individual plans, assessing equipment needs, therapy and accessibility assessments of the home and external environments. As you may be aware the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) funds the core needs but does not go further. This is where we need you.

    To find out more about our recent appeal and to make a donation go to https://northcott.com.au/service/give-now/

    Another way you can support Northcott’s work is by getting involved in International Day of People with Disability.

    Northcott is encouraging local businesses and organisations to get involved with International Day of People with Disability that is held each year on 3 December. It is a day that aims to increase public awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability. It’s also a celebration of the contribution people with disability make to the community.

    By gathering together to celebrate this day, you can take practical action to highlight your support of people with disability and actively contribute to building a genuinely inclusive society.

    You can host an event any time between now and the end of the year and raise funds to support Northcott’s important services.

    Your event doesn’t need to be huge - just a small and meaningful gathering such as a morning tea with a gold coin donation or promoting your support of this day.

    Through this action your organisation will help break down barriers for the 4.3 million Australians who are living with disability and help to create positive change in our community.

    For more information on how our organisation can get involved, contact Holly Borbely on:

    P: (02) 9890 0536 or

    E: holly.borbely@northcott.com.au


  • 22-Nov-2018 10:02 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    It’s performance review season, and you know the drill. Fill in those long, tedious performance documents, drag each of your direct reports into a conference room for a one-on-one, hand them the performance document, and then start the same, tired conversation. Say some positive things about what the employee is good at, then some unpleasant things about what he/she’s not good at, and end with some more strokes of his/her ego to try to end on a positive note. The result: a mixed message that leaves even your best employees feeling disappointed, and results in little (if any!) change in attitude, behaviours or performance.

    This Performance Management System is broken. Industry leaders including Adobe, Microsoft and Deloitte have all abandoned the traditional system complete with the dreaded annual appraisal, and 70% of corporate employers are either currently reviewing or updating their approach. The question becomes – what do you need to replace it with?

    Many smart companies recognise there is a difference between a performance management system and having conversations that genuinely improve performance. These companies have woken up to the fact that it’s the conversation rather than the system that makes the difference.

    So they are shifting their attention to equipping their managers to have the effective ongoing conversations so crucial to developing and expecting excellence in their people. Such conversations can at times be sensitive or difficult and as a consequence are often avoided by managers. All mediocrity continues and arises as a result of a tough conversation someone didn’t have.

    ‘Performance Conversations that actually work’ is a 2-hour dynamic and practical workshop. In it you will learn:

    • How to give honest feedback without the person becoming defensive or emotional
    • How to set clear and meaningful development goals with your direct report
    • How to ensure they are motivated to achieve these goals and take accountability for doing so
    • How to ask the right questions in the right way to keep your best talent

    You will also have the opportunity to ask your questions and share your experiences or frustrations.

    Don’t spend December and January dreading those Performance Reviews with your team. Instead sign up for this 2-hour workshop:

    4-6pm on Thursday, 17 January

    World Class Teams guarantee that after the workshop you will be able to have the conversations you need to have, and get the results you want rather than the reaction you fear.

    Price:

    World Class Teams would like to exclusively offer WSBC members the special early bird price of $89.00 (if they book before the 31st December) and $109 (if they book from 1st January).

    General Entry: Early Bird $119 (until 31st December); $139 (from 1st January)

    Limited to 40 people to ensure strong interaction

    Book now by clicking here or for more information please call Ramsina McCully from World Class Teams on 1300 085 248.


  • 22-Nov-2018 09:42 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    A new partnership between Children’s Medical Research Institute (CMRI) in Westmead and LogicBio Therapeutics in Boston, is set to fast track gene therapy treatments for children with life-threatening genetic liver disease and also boost Australia’s growing biotech industry.

    The deal, announced this month, will see the partners develop new viral vectors, which transport a healthy copy of a gene into a patient’s cells to either replace or edit the faulty gene. It could dramatically change the lives of children like three-year-old Charlize Gravina.

    Charlize and her twin brother Isaac were born with propionic acidemia, which is a serious metabolic disorder. Isaac required a liver transplant when he was just two years old. Unfortunately, due to post-surgery complications, he died a short time after the transplant. Within months, his family went through the heart-breaking decision of submitting Charlize to the same procedure. She has now had two liver transplants and her parents, Julie and Paul, are so excited to hear about this collaboration.

    “When you are told there is no treatment, no cure,’’ Mrs Gravina said, “all you want to do is change things for other people, so they don’t have to go through what we’ve gone through.’’

    This new program is led by Professor Ian Alexander who is head of the Gene Therapy Research Unit, a joint venture of CMRI and the Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network (SCHN), and Dr Leszek Lisowski who is leader of the Translational Vectorology Group at CMRI.

    Prof Alexander, a scientist and a clinician, said they hoped to produce significant outcomes for patients like the Gravinas. They are even using a sample from Charlize’s liver in their research.

    “This technology could translate into saving the lives of infants with life-threatening conditions,’’ Prof Alexander said. “It’s about getting cures into the clinic as soon as we can.”

    “We’re trying to get to a point where instead of a liver transplant in a very young infant, we can genetically repair the liver without major surgery. It’s a very exciting time to be doing gene therapy.’’

    He said the investment from LogicBio was also a good sign for the local industry, acknowledging and supporting the local expertise.

    “It recognises that we are one of the key groups in the world doing this work. I think this is an indication of the growing recognition of the strength of Australian researchers in this highly specialized field, contributing to the globally exciting development of gene therapies. It is further growth of the Australian biotech industry and will have a knock-on effect. We see it as the beginning of something much greater. It is about moving technology into the clinic which, in future, will benefit many more patients by offering new and better treatment opportunities.’’

    Dr Lisowski said the LogicBio deal could help make a difference between therapies being readily accessible to patients or not.

    “At the moment, we can routinely produce vectors in the lab, but to move to much larger clinical scales it is very costly and involves long, overseas waiting times for clinical trials’’ he said. “For one person it could be between $300,000 to $1 million for a single treatment. That means the therapies are not going to be available to most of the public any time soon. We aim to change that; to reduce costs and local waiting times for trials so these cures are more widely and more quickly available. While the initial focus is on liver the technology has the potential to expand to other disease targets, involving the brain, the heart, kidneys, bone marrow and pancreas, for example.’’

    LogicBio CEO, Fred Chereau, said, "We’re optimistic that we can significantly improve the performance of AAV vectors through this collaboration. These next-generation vectors will strengthen our platform and expand our pipeline. We also expect them to bolster other important approaches to genetic medicine, including gene therapies.”

    This latest announcement follows on from the news earlier in the year that the NSW State Government, through the Office of Health and Medical Research, will provide funding to establish start-up facilities that will manufacture gene transfer vectors in Western Sydney. This project is also run jointly by Professor Alexander and Dr Lisowski at CMRI and the SCHN.

    The Gravinas are now focused on providing the best future they can for Charlize and her big sister, Amelia, who wants to be a medical researcher – but they also want to help future generations.

    “There are so many questions where we don’t have answers,’’ Mr Gravina said. “We’ll never stop wanting to help as many people as we can.’’

    If you would like to find out more about how you can support this work, or to organise a tour of the labs, contact info@cmri.org.au


  • 22-Nov-2018 09:12 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)


    Prudence Rehab are the trusted wellness experts when it comes to managing employee health and well-being. Maintaining optimal physical and psychological health of your workforce are integral to business success, and leveraging from our experience and wholistic approach to evidence-based injury prevention and rehabilitation, Prudence Rehab can identify and optimise areas of your business to achieve improved wellness performance.

    In understanding your business, our strategy is simple:

    • reduce absenteeism and the financial, physical and psychological costs associated with employee injury and illness
    • improve the health and wellbeing of your workforce
    • increase employee engagement, satisfaction and retention
    • improve recruitment and increase productivity
    • ensure adherence to work health and safety obligations
    • assist with the development of policies that address barriers to employment
    • reduce claims costs and insurance premiums.

    People who exercise have better mental fitness. Research into the effect of exercise as a prevention strategy and a treatment for depression have revealed resoundingly positive results.

    Regular exercise has been found to change specific parts of the brain involved in memory, anxiety and depression, and has been shown to have protective effects against the development of depression.

    In a landmark study led by the Black Dog Institute, regular exercise of any intensity was shown to be effective in preventing depression in many people, from as little as 1 hour per week, regardless of age or gender. The HUNT study, published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, is one of the most extensive studies of its kind, analysing the effect of exercise on symptoms of anxiety and depression for over 33,000 people over 11 years. People who were not exercising had a 44% increased chance of developing depression than the people who were exercising 1-2 hours per week.

    When prescribed as a treatment, 16 weeks of regular exercise was found to be equally as effective as antidepressant medication for mild to moderate depression, without any of the adverse side effects. For people with severe depression, a combination of exercise, medication and psychological therapy gave the best outcomes.

    Your Brain on Exercise:

    We’ve put together 10 ways regular exercise may alleviate the symptoms of mild to moderate depression:

    • Increasing energy levels
    • Reducing the impact of stress
    • Improving sleep
    • Distracting from worries and rumination
    • Providing social connection, if done in a group
    • Building levels of protective and growth factors in the brain (BDNF)
    • Increases growth of new neurons in part of the brain responsible for memory and mood (hippocampus)
    • Replenishing neurotransmitters that are vital to mood, motivation and memory
    • Increasing natural vitamin D if exercising outdoors
    • Improves self-esteem

    The Prudence Rehab Revitalise Program incorporates exercise as a vital part of restoring life domains essential to good mental health. The program can be used as an early intervention for people who are at risk of depression, or as a treatment program to reduce the severity and duration of depression and restore function and quality of life.

    Are you doing enough exercise?

    To learn more or book contact us: t 02 9283 5552 | e support@prudencerehab.com.au | w www.prudencerehab.com.au


  • 20-Nov-2018 14:12 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    These days one of the biggest drawcards that employers can offer staff is the opportunity to volunteer with a charity. For many companies, volunteering at The Salvation Army’s candle-bag packing is an annual pilgrimage, joining an army of volunteers at Woolworths’ Yennora warehouse to pack 8500 bags of donated treats – and candles – for the Carols in the Domain event on Saturday 22 December.

    Community Fundraising Coordinator Estelle Mansfield says, “Some companies are fantastic; they come year on year. Just yesterday we asked, ‘Who’s candle-bag-packed before?’ and nearly every single person put their hand up. They keep saying, ‘We’re coming back – see you next year’.”

    Proceeds from the bags go to fund Oasis, The Salvation Army’s youth support network. Every five bags sold enables a safe place for someone to sleep.

    Building products company CSR has been a Salvation Army supporter since 2003. This is their third year of candle-bag packing, according to Corporate Affairs Officer Margaretta Adam. “It resonates with a lot of people because it’s Australia-wide and what you support is very wide ranging.

    “The candle-bag packing is fantastic – great energy, great camaraderie and great fun. CSR really values people being able to donate time,” Margaretta adds. “And employees really value being able to donate their time to a great cause.”

    Family history inspires a first timer

    First-time volunteer Michael Babekuhl from CHEP (an international company dealing in pallet and container pooling services) has a more personal reason for taking on a packing shift. “My grandfather and his brother went to New Guinea in World War Two; his brother didn’t come back but my grandfather did. He always said, ‘Thank God for the Salvos’ – they had been alongside him there for years. He passed away last year at 95, and even at his funeral the Salvos were there.”

    The feel-good factor is everywhere. Margaretta says, “You can tell your friends this is what I did today, this is how many of us volunteered, we had a production line. You’re actually physically doing it and when you watch Carols in the Domain, you say, I helped to get that together.”

    To share in the season, you can register for next year – or any of our other volunteering opportunities – by emailing Rebecca Hill on corporatevolunteering@aue.salvationarmy.org

    And don’t forget, by attending Carols in the Domain and buying a candle bag, you can bring hope where it’s needed most this Christmas.

    Isn’t that what Christmas is all about?

  • 19-Nov-2018 14:01 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    By Fay Calderone, Partner - Hall & Wilcox

    New rights applying to casual employees came into effect on 1 October 2018 with the Fair Work Commission introducing a model casual conversion term into approximately 85 Awards (Model Terms).

    The purpose of the Model Terms is to provide casual employees who have worked a regular pattern of hours for at least 12 months, without significant adjustment, the right to request their employment be converted to a permanent part-time or full-time arrangement - so what does this mean for employers?

    Under the Model Terms, employers must:

    • provide all casual employees with a copy of the applicable Model Term by 1 January 2019, or if they were employed after 1 October 2018, then within 12 month of their commencement (we note that some Awards differ so employers should review the Award which applies to their workplace to determine their obligations);
    • respond, within 21 days, to any written request by a casual employee to convert to their employment to either full-time or part-time; and
    • where a request is granted, ensure the conversion is recorded in writing and the change takes effect from the next pay cycle (unless otherwise agreed).

    The Model Terms provide that employers can only refuse a request on reasonable grounds, such as where a significant adjustment to the casual employee’s hours of work would be required to accommodate them in full-time or part-time employment under the applicable modern award, or where it is reasonably foreseeable that the casual employee’s hours of work will significantly reduce, or position will cease to exist, within the next 12 months.

    An employee has the right to challenge any refusal using the dispute resolution provisions in the relevant Award and an employer may be liable for penalties for any breach of their obligations.

    What does this mean for your business?

    While the changes seem daunting, practically speaking, many casual employees are incentivised by the 25% casual loading and may not be inclined to request a conversion. Nonetheless, employers need to be aware of their obligations under the Model Terms or risk being liable for significant penalties.

    Regardless of whether your casual employees will request a conversion, employers with casual workers that have worked on a regular and systematic basis for an extended period of time, should take this opportunity to consider converting those workers to a permanent status.

    There has been a recent influx of cases in which a ‘casual’ employee claims they are a permanent employee at common law and seek redress for unpaid annual leave and other entitlements. Earlier this year in the Federal Circuit Court case Apostolides v Mantina Earthmovers & Constructions Pty Ltd [2018]1 a worker successfully argued that they were a permanent employee and the Court held they were entitled to 15 years of back-paid annual leave entitlements.

    In the recent case WorkPac Pty Ltd v Skene [2018]2 the Full Court of the Federal Court also found a ‘fly-in fly-out’ worker was not a casual employee for the purposes of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) leaving WorkPac is liable for unpaid leave entitlements. The Full Court determined that casual employment arrangements are likely to have the following characteristics:

    • no firm advance commitment as to the duration of the employment or the days or hours that will be worked;
    • no firm advance commitment from the employer that the work offered will be ongoing or indefinite and no firm advance commitment from the employee that they will accept ongoing employment from the employer;
    • informal, uncertain, intermittent or irregular engagements;
    • payment by the hour;
    • payment of a casual loading in lieu of entitlements to paid leave; and
    • termination at short or on no notice.

    In response to the WorkPac v Skene decision, WorkPac has commenced another case in the Federal Court seeking a declaration that employee Robert Rossato is a casual employee and should not be entitled to leave. The Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union as well as former WorkPac employee, Mr Skene, have applied to intervene in the proceedings to support Mr Rossato’s claim that he is a permanent employee.

    Industrial Relations Minister, Kelly O’Dwyer has also applied to intervene, fearing that the decision in WorkPac v Skene is causing a flood of casual employees trying to ‘double-dip’ on casual loading and leave entitlements, which should be offset against each other in the circumstance that a worker is deemed to have been a permanent employee.

    While the WorkPac v Skene decision remains unturned, employers should be wary that if some of the above characteristics are absent from your agreement with your casual employees, you should consider converting them to a permanent status or risk being liable for back payment of their leave and other entitlements.

    What should you do?

    In light of the recent changes, you should:

    • familiarise yourself with your obligations under the Model Term within the applicable Modern Award or enterprise agreement which is relevant to your employees;
    • provide all current casual employees with a copy of the applicable Model Term before 1 January 2019;
    • provide all new casual employees, who have commenced from 1 October 2018 onwards, with a copy of the applicable Model Term within 12 months of their commencement (or as otherwise specified under the applicable Award);
    • consider all written requests by casual employees to convert to permanent employment and respond within 21 days; and
    • take this opportunity to reflect on your existing casual arrangements and consider whether it would be more appropriate to convert them to a permanent status so as to avoid any future liability to back-pay annual leave and other entitlements.

    If you have any questions relating to this article, or if you would like advice on the new rights applying to casual employees, please contact the author of the article, Fay Calderone, Partner at Hall & Wilcox on +61 2 8267 2800 or by email, fay.calderone@hallandwilcox.com.au

    1 FCCA 279.

    2 FCAFC 131.



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