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Security Services Industry Award 2010 (SSIA)

The award modernisation process replaced some 1560 State and federal awards covering 93 industries and occupations with 122 modern awards. The Security Services Industry Award 2010 (SSIA) sets award pay rates and working conditions for Security Guards and monitoring personnel from 1 January 2010.

New and existing businesses have to comply with this award system, as well as the National Employment Standards (NES).

The Security Services Industry Award will not cover security employees engaged primarily and substantially on Cash in Transit work nor will it cover Alarm, Access Control or CCTV systems installers. These groups will have their own national awards.

The Australian Industrial Relations Commission handed down a Draft  copy of the Security Services Industry  Award 2010 on 12 September 2008, after consultation with Australian Security Industry Association Limited (ASIAL), other employer parties and the Liquor Hospitality and Miscellaneous Union (LHMU) now the United Voice.

The SSIA is based on NES. The NES is the minimum conditions for all employment and the SSIA builds on the NES with conditions particular to the Security Industry.

Click: National Employment Standard

Security Services Industry Award 2010

Working Conditions

Some of the changes between the individual Federal Notional Agreement Protecting State Awards (NAPSA), State Awards and the Security Services Industry Award are:

  • Shifts are now defined as Day Span and Night Span with specific work hours and are simpler in operation than that which existed in the various NAPSAs and State Awards.
  • Work classifications may differ with the old NAPSAs and State Awards so check if your work classification, according to the work you do, has been reclassified as this will effect your current hourly wage.
  • Allowances are significantly less that what was contained in various NAPSAs and State Awards, however some allowances that the LHMU fought for have been retained in the new award to be phased out over the transition period of 4 years.

The SSIA will, with the NES, form the safety net for employees not covered by an approved Enterprise Agreement. It will be the minimum standard against which all new Enterprise Agreements will be measured for the Better Off Overall Test (BOOT) and subsequent approval.

Transition Period 

ASIAL and the LHMU agreed that all provisions, other than wage rates, casual loadings and shift allowances, were to operate from 1 January 2010 and changes to payscales and penalties to commence on 1 Jul 2010.  

There were differences in pay rates, casual loadings and shift allowances  that applied to security guards in the Federal NAPSA and State Systems depending in which State you worked.

The object of the transitional phase is to gradually increase payscales by the percentage increase handed down in the wage review plus 20% each year of the difference between the NAPSA pay scale for the individual state and the SSIA initial award payscale. This transitional phase will end in July 2014 and thereafter all security workers working in all states will be on the same payscale contained in the SSIA.

Penalty rates (weekend penalty, shift penalty) and casual loading which existed and were below the award rate in different states are to be increased by 20% from 1 July 2010 each year until 1 July 2014 at which time all security guards in each state will be on the same casual loading and penalty rate contained in the SSIA.

The reasoning behind this is that employers are able to adjust their wage rate structure over time rather than a big increase that will impact on their current security contracts with clients. The reason why the 1 July date is chosen for the yearly increase is that different payscales are adjusted on this date, by the Fair Work Commission's Minimum Wage Panel.

This is known as the Annual Wage Review and is a set percent increase each year to all payscales to reflect the cost of inflation in the previous year.The size of the increase of the hourly rates that apply to the SSIA at 1 July each year will the Annual Wage Review increase plus the transisitional amount for that year. The transitional amout increase will cease after July 2014.

What Should You be Paid Now

Download the Security Services Industry Award Pay Rate Calculator which computes the hourly pay rate for different shifts and allows input of shift times to calculate your weekly wage including allowances.

Click:  Security Services Industry Award Pay Rate Calculator

This is an Excel spreadsheet and you must have an Excel spreadsheet application on your computer to open it. By entering your present work or shift times you can calculate what you are entitled to under Security Services Industry Award 2010.

If Prior to 2010, you worked for:

  • Sole Trader or Partnership and you live in a state other than Victoria, the coverage was previously under your State Award but at the beginning of 2011 your pay and conditions will come under the Security Services Industry Award 2010.
  • Security Company incorporated before 27 March 2006 which were governed by the relevant NAPSA and the Federal Pay Scale Summary - the working conditions will be governed by the Security Services Industry Award.
  • Security Company incorporated after 27 March 2006 and operated under the Fair Pay and Condition Standard which did not have any penalty rates or allowances - working conditions will be governed by the Security Services Industry Award 2010 which improved working conditions and re-established penalty rates and allowances.
  • A Security Company which is incorporated and there exists an Employee Collective Agreement or what is now known as and Enterprise Agreement. The Employee Collective Agreement will be in force until it expires in the next couple of years. Check out the expiry time and have your workplace organize to bargain with your employer for new wage rates and conditions when it expires. You can do this by having union membership or collectively engaging a Bargaining Agent or Industrial Relations Consultant. Click here to see the section on Bargaining.

A lot of companies which incorporated after 27 March 2006 and chose not to negotiate with their employees for a Employee Collective Agreement will be looking to bargain for an Enterprise Agreement under the Security Services Industry Award 2010. Click here to see the section on Bargaining.

Organize your workplace to effectively bargain with the management by either joining the union United Voice (Liquor Hospitality and Miscellaneous Union (LHMU)) or engaging a Industrial Relations Consultant as your Bargaining Agent when this eventuates. More information is available at Fair Work Comission Website

National Employment Standard

The National Employment Standard (NES) is generally much the same as the Australian Fair Pay and Conditions Standard introduced by Work Choices. However, there are a few key differences which are identified here:

Parental Leave ‐ a parent employee will now have the right to request up to an extra 12 months of unpaid parental leave. This can only be refused on 'reasonable business grounds' and must give written reasons within 21 days.  There is also a new obligation on the employer to consult with an employee on parental leave if the employer makes a decision that will significantly affect the employee's pre‐parental leave position.

Flexible Work for Parents ‐ this is a new entitlement. Employees (subject to qualifying criteria similar to those for parental leave) may request a change in working arrangements if a parent or carer of a child under school‐age. The request must be in writing and as for extending parental leave beyond 12 months, written reasons must be provided within 21 days if refused by the employer.

Community Service Leave ‐ although not necessarily a new condition, this was not previously part of the Australian Fair Pay and Conditions Standard. Employees are entitled to time off for eligible community service activities, such as fire‐fighting, civil defence and rescue activities with recognised organizations.  There is also a new entitlement to paid jury service of up to 10 days for non‐casual employees.

Redundancy Pay ‐ this is a significant new national standard for employers with more than 15 employees, particularly for non‐award employees such as most management workers. The redundancy standard under the NES is the existing Federal award redundancy standard.

Fair Work Information Statement ‐ similar in function to the  Work Choice Information Statement. This statement needs to be given to all new employees and provides information about the NES, modern awards, agreement making, freedom of association and the role of various government bodies such as Fair Work Australia and the Fair Work Ombudsman.

The End to the Casual Worker Ripoff 

The advantage of the new Security Services Industry Award 2010 is that it set out specifically what is part time work and what is casual work. The new Security Services Industry Award positively defines who is a Part Time worker and who is a Casual worker.

10.4 Part-time employees

(a) A part-time employee is an employee who is employed in a classification in Schedule A—Classifications and who:

(i) is engaged to work fewer than 38 ordinary hours per week or, where the employer operates a roster, an average of fewer than 38 hours per week over the roster cycle; and

(ii) has reasonably predictable hours of work; and

(iii) receives, on a pro rata basis, equivalent pay and conditions to those of full-time employees who do the same kind of work.

(b) At the time of engagement the employer and the part-time employee will agree in writing on a regular pattern of work either:

(i) specifying at least the hours worked each day, which days of the week the employee will work and the actual starting and finishing times each day; or

(ii) specifying the roster that the employee will work (including the actual starting and finishing times for each shift) together with days or parts of days on which the employee will not be rostered.

(c) Any agreed variation to the regular pattern of work must be recorded in writing.

This means that if you only work regularly on Saturday and Sunday on a regular shift you must be employed as a Part Time worker and not a Casual worker.

So if you are employed as a Part Time worker you should receive pro-rata holiday and sick leave for the weekend you work plus the penalty rates for the weekend. If the employer insists that he will only employ you on a casual basis, you are entitled to penalty rates plus your Casual Loading on the normal hourly rate.

Although the financial benefits of the Casual Loading may seem attractive, weigh up the working conditions a permanent part time worker has under the award against a casual worker who can be dismissed at any time without any recourse.

10.5 Casual employees

(a) A casual employee is an employee who is engaged and paid as such.

(b) Casual loading

In addition to the ordinary hourly rate and penalty rates payable for shift, weekend and public holiday work payable to full-time employees, casual employees will be paid a casual loading of the ordinary hourly rate for the classification in which they are employed.