Working From Home Charter

Working from home is here to stay

Working from home offers opportunities to improve the lives of many workers – reducing travel time, more ability to manage work and family, and greater flexibility and autonomy.

There are also emerging risks: the impact on work life balance, the threat of doing more unpaid hours across a much longer working day, not having control of working hours, working expenses being borne by the employee, and the potential impact on mental health.

Australian Unions believe that whether workers are at their office desk or kitchen table they should have rights and entitlements to shared productivity gains, a safe and health work environment and the ability to draw a line between work and life.

With the strength of almost 2 million members, unions have made work and society better for each other and everyone.

A side profile of a woman in a russet-colored turtleneck and white bag. She looks up with her eyes closed.
Sally McManus, ACTU Secretary

Greater access to working from home could make life better for huge numbers of people – but we have to make sure that it’s sustainable and properly supported

Get more information about Covid-Aware workplaces

Five KEY elements for sustainable and secure working from arrangements.

  1. Working from home should always be voluntary, with equal pay regardless of where you work and no out of pocket cost for working people who choose to work from home.
  2. Employers remain responsible for the health and wellbeing of employees working from home during work hours and should do everything they can do remove physical and psychological hazards.
  3. Every employee has the right to disconnect from work outside of work hours. Excessive hours and work creeping into non-work hours must be avoided.
  4. Anyone working from home must still have access to union representation and understand their basic rights. They must also have access to independent dispute settling procedures and arbitration if matters can’t be resolved through discussion.
  5. Regardless of the number of employees working from home or in the workplace, all workers should have their rights protected.

Download the charter

The Working From Home Charter is what Australian Unions believe will make the experience of working from home better, safer and a more positive experience for working people.


Read our Working from Home Report

Australian Unions has conducted a Working from Home survey of over 10,000 workers over 9 weeks in 2020. The results of the survey found there have been significant challenges for workers that have been working from home.

Download report

Need information or support?

Do you have questions about your rights while working from home? Or perhaps you are looking for more specific information about your workplace rights. Contact the Australian Unions Support Centre to get free, confidential workplace information.

Visit Support Centre

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