The McGowan Labor Government has announced a new compensation scheme for medically retired Western Australian police officers and Aboriginal Police Liaison Officers.
The new scheme, which will be implemented by amending the Police Act, will fill the gap in conditions of employment if officers suffer a work-related illness or injury and can no longer serve.
Currently medically retired police officers and Aboriginal Police Liaison Officers are not entitled to receive a prescribed lump sum benefit.
Under the new scheme, medically retired officers will be entitled to:
- a prescribed ‘exit payment’, capped at $235,971 (cap could be increased to more than $400,000 under certain circumstances)
- a prescribed payment of $16,518 for vocational support and retraining
- maintenance of all current in-service and post-service entitlements for work-related and non-work related illness or injury.
These amounts are prescribed under the Workers Compensation and Injury Management Act 1981 and indexed annually. Assessments of impairment will be undertaken by WorkCover accredited assessors.
The new scheme recognises that police compensation could not simply be resolved by extending workers compensation fully to sworn officers, as this would reduce the entitlements they currently receive.
As stated by Premier Mark McGowan:
“This is an historic reform that is long overdue. WA Police have been fighting for a compensation scheme for many years, and I’m proud that it will be delivered under my Government.
“The work that police do is unique and extraordinary. They work under extremely difficult and often dangerous conditions, and their sacrifices are appreciated by all Western Australians.
“It’s tragic when officers are forced to retire due to injuries sustained in the line of duty. When this occurs, they deserve to compensated appropriately and that’s what the new scheme will do.
“Frankly, it’s the least we can do for our brave police officers.
“Supporting WA Police is one of our key priorities and today’s announcement follows the massive boost of 800 extra police officers included in the State Budget on top of 300 extra officers already being delivered.”
As stated by Police Minister Michelle Roberts:
“Today is a monumental day for our police officers and their families.
“Policing is demanding; it is stressful; it is complex and unpredictable; and sometimes dangerous.
“The toll of service can be psychological and physical, and borne by both our officers and their families.
“As Police Minister, I have always been committed to ensuring our officers are well resourced on duty, and supported when they can no longer serve.
“The McGowan Government’s Police compensation scheme reassures our officers and their families that their Government stands with them.
“This scheme fulfils an election commitment and is being implemented with all current in-service and post-service entitlements for work-related and non-work related injury and illness being maintained.
“This is the latest measure we have progressed to support our injured officers, including the $16 million redress scheme and reform of section 8 for medical retirement to ensure officers’ service can end with dignity.”
Police Minister’s office – 6552 6900