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Albanese’s ‘commonsense’ approach to WFH praised by PCA

By Kyle Robbins
21 July 2022 | 1 minute read
Ken Morrison reb

The Property Council of Australia (PCA) has applauded the Prime Minister for his balanced and measured approach to the issue of working from home (WFH) as the country battles a third wave of COVID-19.

Ken Morrison, chief executive of the PCA, said Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s approach reinforced the importance of achieving balance between health and economic outcomes in light of rising COVID and flu infections.

Addressing the media at a doorstep interview on Wednesday (20 July), the Prime Minister stressed the importance of “getting the balance right”, as the country is faced with 53,387 new infections in the last 24 hours.

He recognised that for “some people, it’s just not possible to work from home”, acknowledging that on the other hand, “for many businesses, it works for both the business and the employee to have more people working from home”.

“Of course, we need to recognise there’s a consequence for this as well. If you’re a business that relies upon people coming into the CBD to shop, in retail or hospitality, then your business can be hurt by that as well,” he said.

Providing further comment on radio, Mr Albanese said that despite many working places having adjusted to working from home more permanently, such as the banking sector, he did note that “for many people, it’s simply not possible due to the nature of their work”.

As a result of this, he detailed that his belief is that there cannot be a “prescriptive position that can be put forward [on working from home]”.

Mr Morrison commented that the Prime Minister “was right to acknowledge how, following health advice, businesses have worked hard to protect their staff throughout the pandemic”.

He was pleased to hear how Mr Albanese recognised the one-size-fits-all approach “isn’t the answer”, adding that it should be up to the businesses and the individual employees to craft the arrangements that work for their circumstances.

“The assumption that sending people home to work comes at no cost is wrong. In fact, many CBD businesses have suffered badly and we welcome the Prime Minister’s acknowledgement of that,” he said.

“The businesses that have felt the pain the most aren’t the office tenants of the building owners, it’s the small business owners at the bottom of those buildings — the retailers and restaurateurs who make our cities hum — who’ve been hit hardest.”

Mr Morrison concluded by ratifying his agreement with the Prime Minister’s viewpoint that “a balance can be struck between protecting the health of our population, while also restoring the health of our economy and cities”.

Albanese’s ‘commonsense’ approach to WFH praised by PCA
Ken Morrison reb
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