Fairer compensation regulations for correctional officers

NT Government

Measures that establish a presumption for work-acquired post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) will apply to correctional officers under plans to create more equitable workplaces in Territory prisons.

Work is underway to amend the Return to Work Regulations 1986 so that the definition of ‘first responder’ explicitly includes correctional officers, putting them on an even footing with police officers and firefighters, who no longer have the onus of proving their employment contributes to PTSD.

The changes will clear up any legal ambiguity regarding claims for PTSD, and make it easier to access compensation.

Changes to the regulations will be effective by mid-year.

The Lawler Labor Government continues to support correctional officers through a $191 million investment announced as part of Budget 2024.

The funding will ensure the Northern Territory’s correctional facilities are safe and secure for both staff and prisoners. It will also support efforts to stop the revolving prison door and help offenders reintegrate into the community.

Quotes attributable to Attorney General and Minister for Justice Chansey Paech:

“The Lawler Labor Government respects the important role our correctional officers have in ensuring the safe custody of prisoners in facilities across the NT, and acknowledges the challenging environment in which they work.

“These changes mean the onus is no longer on the officers to prove post-traumatic stress injuries are work related.

“Supporting our correctional officers with fairer compensation measures for work-acquired injuries will accelerate access to treatment and recovery.

“We continue to review and modify legislation and regulations to ensure our laws are relevant, contemporary and fair.

“I acknowledge the advocacy of the United Workers Union in progressing these reforms to support the Territory’s correctional officers.”

/Public Release. View in full here.