July 8

I am sure by now each of you is aware of yesterday’s announcement from Premier Andrews and over the past twelve hours have experienced a range of emotions in this regard. There is no doubt the next six weeks will be challenging for our clients, each of you, your families, and the community at large.

As a direct result of new restrictions coming into effect at 11:59pm this evening (8 July 2020), we are faced with no choice but to cease our staged return of day service activities and immediately scale them back. Accordingly, the following will apply:

  • Wednesday 8 July 2020 – last onsite day service at Middle Crescent
  • Thursday 9 and Friday 10 July 2020 – no 1-1 or 1.2 support at Middle Crescent to allow staff to contact clients and arrange for online service delivery
  • Monday 13 July 2020 – return to online service delivery; Minimal 1-1 or 1-2 support at Middle Crescent

Natarsha Warren and her leadership team will be in contact with all staff over the coming days to make arrangements.

With regard to our residential houses, the restrictions eased over the past few weeks will be reversed and Janet Batey will provide an update to residential staff in the coming days. For our Nepean team, the stay at home directive is clear – if you can work from home, you must work from home.

For all staff regardless of location, please ensure you follow the entry protocol for your site – this includes checking your temperature and recording your attendance. If you are unwell, do not come to work, and please get tested.

Over the coming days, General Managers will reach out to all staff who are directly impacted by these new restrictions. There is no doubt the next six weeks will challenge our individual and collective resolve, but we will get there! I encourage each of you to look out for each other and provide support wherever you can.

Should you have any queries regarding entry protocols, infection control, PPE usage, or any other matter, please reach out to your team leader/manager or general manager. Additionally, as we each come to grapple with this challenge, you may wish to contact our Employee Assistance Provider, Benestar on 1300 360 364. This service is also available to your immediate family/household.

Finally, below you will find a communication that will be sent to our clients later this morning. Thank you everyone for your wonderful support of our clients and families throughout this challenging time and for the care you have for each other.

Take care and stay safe.

Warwick Cavanagh
Chief Executive Officer

July 2

May 19

April 29

As the end of April fast approaches, I find what little spare time I have, reflecting on all that April has dealt.  With all these challenges, the one overwhelming theme for me is pride in all that our Bayley House staff have achieved.  Over the past month, we have:

  • Modified our accommodation settings to safeguard our clients
  • Seen almost all of our corporate services team working remotely
  • Taken our day service activities virtually into our clients living rooms through Bayley House Online
  • Supported some of our high-intensity clients in their own homes
  • And most of us have tried our hands of home-schooling

I know that Warwick and the entire Leadership Team are so grateful to each of you for all your efforts in this challenging time.

JobKeeper Nomination Forms

Last week, Warwick shared an update on the Australian Government’s JobKeeper Scheme and then I sent out 162 JobKeeper Employee Nomination Forms to eligible staff. To date, we have received around 95% of these forms back completed and I thank you for this.

If you have not yet returned the form because, you did not receive it or do not understand what it means, please be assured that we are here to help. It is very important to the organisation, so please feel free to contact us or talk to your peers about it.

Why send the form back?

By nominating Bayley House, you enable us to claim for the JobKeeper Scheme, helping us offset lost revenue across the organisation as a result of COVID19 restrictions. This allows us to continue to offer a quality service for our clients and keep our staff gainfully employed.

Your completion of the nomination form in no way impacts your position with Bayley House, but does allow us to access these important funds.

JobKeeper Payments Commence

For some staff, today’s payroll may include JobKeeper Top-up payments for the fortnight ending 26 April 2020, as well as the fortnight ending 12 April 2020.  As noted in previous communications, for staff eligible for JobKeeper and where fortnightly earnings are less than $1,500, these staff will receive a top-up payment so that fortnightly earning is at least $1,500.  If this is applicable to you, you will see reference to JOBKEEPER TOP-UP on your pay advice.

In addition to this, staff eligible for JobKeeper, but earning more than $1,500 per fortnight, will see reference to JOBKEEPER START on their pay advice.  This is simply our way of recording and reporting on your JobKeeper eligibility.

Restriction Easing

Recent days have seen a number of States and Territories easing COVID19 related restrictions.  The Victorian Government is set to review Victorian restrictions on 11 May 2020.  Whilst we do not yet know what this means for the Victorian community and Bayley House, at some time we need to consider what operating with eased restrictions may look like for our clients and staff.  Rest assured, that should we see an easing of restrictions, that Bayley House will assess the risk to clients and staff in each part of our business, and work with staff to ensure appropriate safety measures are in place.

Tim Whee
General Manager People & Culture 

April 24

Thank you for coming with us on this journey of discovery in recent weeks as we have worked hard to bring a range of supports and activities to clients and families in a ‘remote’ fashion.  We launched Bayley House Live immediately after we had to close Middle Crescent groups due to COVID-19 restrictions and our offerings have evolved in diversity and complexity since then.  This week we plunged full tilt into Bayley House Online with a timetable of activities across the whole week and many clients logging in to their chosen group or 1:1 support. 

Bayley House Online

As we anticipated there have been many challenges throughout the week but feedback from clients, families and indeed staff has been consistently positive and constructive.  It has been a steep learning curve for everyone and, taking into account all your feedback we will improve the online service to suit the needs of our clients. 

Reduced online hours from next week

One important change will be that sessions will reduce in length from three hours to two hours.   

This change was a result of feedback from clients, families, and staff that the current sessions were too long and it was difficult to maintain client focus.  It is interesting that across our whole nation people are coming to terms with working remotely/working from home and that to our surprise this work seems remarkably tiring.  No doubt sociologists will study this phenomenon and in years to come there will be well-evidenced reports on it.

Thank you

I do want to take this opportunity to thank you all for the super-human effort you have made to get us to this point.  I know that Bayley House staff would move heaven and earth to support each and every one of our clients and the last few weeks have been a very clear example of that.  But good endeavours should not be taken for granted and I would like to acknowledge the incredible contribution made by the team to bring these new services to clients and their families.  

April 21


Over the past few weeks, I have provided regular updates to staff on all matters COVID19 related and the ongoing impact to our clients and staff.  Today, I wanted to share with you some extremely important information regarding the Australian Government’s JobKeeper Scheme.


The impact of COVID19 on the Australian community and economy has been largely unprecedented.  Over the last few weeks, we have seen the Victorian Government implement isolation and social distancing measures to limit the virus spread and seen the Australian Government rollout multi-billion dollar stimulus packages, including JobKeeper, as well as amending the Fair Work Act and most Modern Awards to assist employers and employees respond to pandemic.

In my last update to staff on 9 April 2020, I spoke in some detail of the amendments to both the Act and our Award as well as the measures we have taken to maintain ongoing employment of Bayley House staff.  In some cases, this has been through redeployment of staff to suitable alternative roles, many of whom contributed to the launch of our very own Bayley House Online this week.  Whilst the Act allows for the stand down of staff that cannot be effectively utilised, I want to be very clear that stand down is an absolute last resort following the exhaustion of all other options.

JobKeeper Scheme

The Australian Government’s JobKeeper Scheme was passed into law by Parliament on 8 April 2020.  The Scheme allows eligible employers to subsidise wages of eligible staff who continue working or to pass on top-up payments to eligible staff who are stood down or remain employed with earnings below the subsidy amount.  The total fortnightly subsidy is $1,500 (subject to PAYG tax) and is available for the period of 30 March through 28 September 2020.


There are two parts to assessing eligibility for the Scheme – the employer and the employee eligibility.  We have assessed our company position and have determined Bayley House’s eligibility for the Scheme.

An eligible employee is an employee who:

  • is currently employed by an eligible employer (including those stood down or re-hired);
  • is a full-time or part-time employee at 1 March 2020 or a casual employed on a regular and systematic basis for longer than 12 months as at 1 March 2020;
  • is a permanent employee of the employer, or if a casual employee, not a permanent employee of any other employer;
  • was an Australian citizen, the holder of a permanent visa, or a Special Category (Subclass 444) Visa Holder at 1 March 2020;
  • was a resident for Australian tax purposes on 1 March 2020; and
  • is not in receipt of a JobKeeper Payment from another employer.

Please note, that an individual’s eligibility for JobKeeper in no way determines the status of their ongoing employment with Bayley House.  We remain committed to maintaining staff in their current or redeployed roles regardless of your individual eligibility for JobKeeper.  For absolute transparency, we have identified only two roles, affecting seven staff, for standdown as no other suitable alternate role exists for these individuals.  These individuals have not been terminated and will return to Bayley House in due time.

How Payments Work

A full statement of how JobKeeper payments are processed is available from the Australian Taxation Office.  A summary of potential scenarios is noted below:

  • Alex currently earns $2,000 a fortnight and remains gainfully employed. Alex is eligible for JobKeeper as a full-time employee.  In this situation, Alex continues to receive her regular fortnightly earnings of $2,000.  Her employer is eligible to claim the JobSeeker subsidy.
  • Brian currently earns$1,200 a fortnight and remains gainfully employed. Brian is eligible for JobKeeper as a part-time employee.  In this situation, Brian will receive his regular fortnightly earning of $1,200, plus top-up earnings under JobKeeper to a total of $1,500 gross.
  • Susie is casual and in this fortnight her earnings totalled $1,800. In this situation, Susie will be paid her fortnightly earnings.  Where Susie is eligible for JobKeeper, her employer is able to claim the JobKeeper subsidy.
  • Alan is casual and this fortnight his earnings totalled $800. In this situation, the following may apply:
    • Where Alan is eligible for JobKeeper, he will be paid his fortnightly earnings, plus top-up earnings under JobKeeper to a total of $1,500 gross.
    • Where Alan is not eligible for JobKeeper, he will be paid his fortnightly earnings. If eligible, Alan may seek top-up payment through Services Australian under the JobSeeker scheme.
  • Helen is casual and this fortnight had no earnings. In this situation, the following may apply:
    • Where Helen is eligible for JobKeeper, she will be paid top-up earnings under JobKeeper to a total of $1,500 gross.
    • Where Helen is not eligible for JobKeeper, she may be able to seek payment through Services Australian under the JobSeeker scheme.
  • Hugh’s role has been impacted by business turndown and he has been stooddown without pay. Hugh is eligible for JobKeeper.  Hugh will be paid $1,500 per fortnight gross by his employer through the JobKeeper scheme.

Nomination Process

In order for staff to be paid JobKeeper top-ups and/or for their employer to access the JobKeeper subsidy, eligible staff must complete the JobKeeper Employee Nomination Notice.  If we believe you are eligible for the JobKeeper Scheme, you will receive your individualised JobKeeper Employee Nomination Form to complete and return.  Eligible staff will receive their form by Thursday 23 April 2020 and these must be returned by 27 April 2020.  If you have not received a form by Friday 24 April 2020 or you wish to query you eligibility, please contact hr@bayleyhouse.org.au.

Even if you currently earn more than $1,500 per fortnight and remain gainfully employed, it is important that you complete the JobKeeper Employee Nomination Form.  This is the basis on which Bayley House will be subsidised via JobKeeper and can continue to employ staff and thereby continue to deliver quality services to our clients.

I know there is a lot of information here.  Please do not hesitate to reach out to your team leader/manager, general manager or human resources for further information.

Warwick Cavanagh
Chief Executive Officer

Frequently Asked Questions

How will I know if I am eligible for JobKeeper?

You will receive an email on Thursday 23 April 2020 with your individualised JobKeeper Employee Nomination Form.  Please complete this form and return via DocuSign.

I currently get paid more than $1,500 per fortnight now. If I am eligible for JobKeeper, do I get paid an additional $1,500 on top of this?

No.  Where your regular fortnightly earnings are more than $1,500, you will receive your regular fortnightly earnings and your employer will receive the JobKeeper subsidy.

I currently get paid less than $1,500 per fortnight now. If I am eligible for JobKeeper, what happens?

Where you are paid less than $1,500 per fortnight, you will receive top-up earnings up to $1,500 per fortnight through the JobKeeper subsidy.

When will JobKeeper related payments commence?

JobKeeper payments will be made as part of the standard fortnightly payroll process.  The Scheme operates between 30 March and 28 September 2020.

Staff eligible for JobKeeper top-up from 13 April 2020 will be paid on 29 April 2020 and fortnightly thereafter until the Scheme concludes.  Staff eligible for JobKeeper top-up for the period of 30 March 2020 through 12 April 2020 will be paid retrospectively on 29 April 2020.

What if I am paid JobKeeper top-up in April but I have not returned the form or completed the form but find out later that I am not eligible?

April JobKeeper top-up payments are paid in good faith based on our interpretation of staff eligibility.  Should you not complete the form or complete form but later find you are not eligible, this amount will be treated as an over-payment and will need to be withheld from future earnings.  We understand this may be a difficult financial time for staff and will work with affected staff to negotiate a timeframe for repayment.

Is tax payable on JobKeeper payments?

Yes.  PAYG tax will be withheld on all JobKeeper payments.

Is superannuation payable on JobKeeper payments?

Staff will continue to be paid superannuation subject to the Superannuation Guarantee legislation based on work hours undertaken.  Superannuation is not payable on any JobKeeper payments where a top-up payment is made or when a full JobKeeper payment due to stand down or in the case of an eligible casual employee with no earnings.

What if I am stood down?

Staff may be stood down without pay where employers have exhausted redeployment, flexible work arrangements and leave options, and where an employer cannot provide gainful work to staff.  Where an employee is stood down, the following may apply:

  • For staff eligible for JobKeeper, you will be paid the $1,500 gross JobKeeper subsidy per fortnight
  • For staff not eligible for JobKeeper, you will remain unpaid. Such staff may be eligible for JobSeeker payments through Services Australia

What if I am casual and getting reduced work or no work?

The following may apply:

  • Eligible for JobKeeper:
    • Where casual earnings fall below $1,500 per fortnight, employers will top-up payments to $1,500 gross per fortnight with the JobKeeper subsidy
  • Not eligible for JobKeeper:
    • Casuals will be paid the hours they work within a given fortnight. Casual staff may be able to seek full payment or top-up payment where eligible for the JobSeeker scheme through Services Australia.

Where can I find additional information on JobKeeper and JobSeeker?

Additional information can be found at:

Where can I seek additional support?

Staff experiencing difficulties may address queries to their team leader/manager, general manager or human resources.  Staff may also contact our Employee Assistance Provider, Benestar on 1300 360 364.

April 9

Day Program staff will be redeployed in the following ways

  1. Group-Based activities run online
  2. group-based activities in Residential services
  3. supporting vulnerable clients with 1 to 1 support both at home or at Middle Crescent
  4. planning for future group-based activities
  5. training
  6. updates to Supportability client profiles
  7. calls and emails to support families, carers and clients in the current circumstance
  8. Intake and back of house administrative tasks
  9. redeployed to areas of need as required

Summary of recent legislative amendments

Fair Work Act

Three temporary amendments that provide businesses with workforce flexibility to maintain and maximise employment opportunities for workers.  These are:

  • Alterations to duties and work locations – to support the flexible redeployment of staff to alternate roles to maintain and maximise employment.  Staff will be provided with appropriate training where required.
  • Alterations to days of work or direction to take annual leave – to support operational flexibility and maintain financial stability for employers and workers
  • Stand down provisions enabled by JobKeeper Scheme – temporary provisions supported by the JobKeeper Scheme.  This sets out the direction and consultation requirements around workforce alterations attributed to COVID19 consequences.

The amendments are in place until 28 September 2020, unless extended.

JobKeeper/JobSeeker Schemes

An unprecedented Commonwealth package to support businesses and to maintain and maximise employment for workers.  Both schemes are complex and are briefly summarised below.  In addition, you will find a number of JobKeeper/JobSeeker scenarios and Frequently Asked Questions.

JobKeeper Scheme 
Subject to employer eligibility, employers can access the JobKeeper Scheme for the following staff:

  • Full-time/part-time staff employed at 1 March 2020 that remain employed
  • Casual staff employed at 1 March 2020 with at least 12 months’ service

Subject to individual availability, an individual can access the JobSeeker Scheme where:

  • They are not eligible worker under the JobKeeper Scheme
  • They are either unemployed or underemployed

JobSeeker and JobKeeper Scenarios 
The following may apply:

  • Alex currently earns $2,000 a fortnight and remains gainfully employed.  Alex is eligible for JobKeeper as a full-time employee.  In this situation, Alex continues to receive her regular fortnightly earnings of $2,000.  Her employer is eligible to claim the JobSeeker subsidy.
  • Brian currently earns$1,200 a fortnight and remains gainfully employed.  Brian is eligible for JobKeeper as a part-time employee.  In this situation, Brian will receive his regular fortnightly earning of $1,200, plus top-up earnings under JobKeeper to a total of $1,500 gross.
  • Susie is casual and in this fortnight her earnings totalled $1,800.  In this situation, Susie will be paid her fortnightly earnings.  Where Susie is eligible for JobKeeper, her employer is able to claim the JobKeeper subsidy.
  • Alan is casual and this fortnight his earnings totalled $800.  In this situation, the following may apply:
    • Where Alan is eligible for JobKeeper, he will be paid his fortnightly earnings, plus top-up earnings under JobKeeper to a total of $1,500 gross.
    • Where Alan is not eligible for JobKeeper, he will be paid his fortnightly earnings.  If eligible, Alan may seek top-up payment through Services Australian under the JobSeeker scheme.
  • Helen is casual and this fortnight had no earnings.  In this situation, the following may apply:
    • Where Helen is eligible for JobKeeper, she will be paid top-up earnings under JobKeeper to a total of $1,500 gross.
    • Where Helen is not eligible for JobKeeper, she may be able to seek payment through Services Australian under the JobSeeker scheme.
  • Hugh’s role has been impacted by business turndown and he has been stood down without pay.  Hugh is eligible for JobKeeper.  Hugh will be paid $1,500 per fortnight gross by his employer through the JobKeeper scheme.

Additional information can be found at: 

The JobKeeper Scheme and amendments to the Fair Work Act 2009 are being debated by Federal Parliament on 8 April 2020, with approval or modified approval expected the same day.

March 31

CEO Update for Residential Staff


March 26



You may have seen the CEO Update last night regarding the temporarily closing of all group activities. If you have not yet read it, please visit www.bayleyhouse.org.au/coronavirus-updates

I’m sure you’ll agree that these are challenging and unprecedented times. Bayley House is committed to maintaining the health and safety of our clients and each other through this period and we appreciate your help and positive attitudes. Should you have any queries, please forward them to your team leader, manager or general manager.

The Bayley House Leadership team have met to discuss the impact these changes will have on all staff and wish to report the following;

  • We will bring forward the July Day Service semester/term break to March April – Commencing 24 March
  • At this stage, we are hopeful that services are able to return on 14 April. More information will be provided over the coming weeks.
  • Full-time and part-time Day Service staff (inc. Transport) will access annual leave entitlements as per standard semester break. Any staff with insufficient annual leave available will be permitted to access leave in advance of their entitlement
  • We are allocating additional shifts across our residential services in order to alleviate the stress arising from residential setting lockdowns
  • We intend to redeploy as many casual staff as possible to Accommodation to facilitate Day Services within each house
  • We have re-arranged Accommodation rosters to ensure that staff only work in one house, limiting the potential spread of the virus. The same will apply for additional services and activities
  • Recruitment continues for several roles with a number of new staff joining us in coming weeks and we are looking at ways of providing remote orientation
  • We are implementing IT systems and procedures to enable remote working and distancing requirements for Corporate Services staff including Marketing, HR, Finance and Support Coordination
  • Brighton Medical Centre is unable to provide onsite Bayley House flu vaccinations. Individuals will need to organise their own flu vaccinations this year and Bayley House will reimburse out of pocket expenses. For those based near Hampton office, the local Chemist Warehouse is taking bookings for March 30 to June 6.
  • Bayley House office phone will be working during our closure and all enquiries should continue to go through the office or dayservice@bayleyhouse.org.au email address.
  • Counselling will continue and new clients are welcome to this service, all enquires should go through to Krysia: khodgson@bayleyhouse.org.au
  • Physiotherapy service will continue to be available through home-based appointments. Physios should be in contact with their current clients soon.

We will send further updates to clients and families over the next few days and include you in these emails so please stay up to date. In the meantime, should you have any questions or concerns please contact your direct manager or general manager to discuss and remember that Benestar, your employee assistance program, is available to support you through this difficult time.

Coronavirus Information

Guide to Outbreaks in Residential Care Facilities

Support for people commuting through Tolls

About the Coronavius

Self isolation

The importance of social distancing and isolation

Cyber Security during the Coronavirus Pandemic

Coronavirus hotline 1800 675 398

If you suspect you may have the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) call the dedicated hotline – open 24 hours, 7 days.
Please keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies only.

PPE Equipment – How to wear a mask

How to protect yourself and others

Practical strategies and ideas for Participants and Families