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State Public Sector Workers

South Australian Public Sector Workers employment rights and responsibilities are largely covered by the Public Sector Act 2009 (SA), Public Sector Regulations 2010 (SA), Public Sector (Honesty and Accountability) Act 1995 (SA) and relevant Awards and Enterprise agreements.

Public Sector Act

Amongst other things the Public Sector Act 2009 (SA) sets out entitlements such as notice on termination (14 days notice), probation periods (12 months but it can be less), as well as leave rights and other entitlements and responsibilities.

The Act establishes the Commissioner for Public Sector Employment. The Commissioner makes policy standards (Determinations, Standards, and Guidelines) which set out further rights and responsibilities. These are available on the Office of the Public Sector website.

The Public Sector Act 2009 (SA) provides that there be a Code of Conduct for the Public Sector. This Code is called the Code of Ethics for the South Australian Public Sector, all public sector employees must comply with the Code.

Unfair Dismissal

While the Public Sector Act 2009 (SA) has its own disciplinary process for issues of misconduct and poor performance, Unfair Dismissal claims for State Public Servants are covered by the Fair Work Act 1994 (SA). There is 21 days to make an unfair dismissal application under that process. See the South Australian Employment Tribunal website for information on making unfair dismissal claims.

For the Redeployment, Retraining and Redundancy Determination of the Commissioner for Public Sector Workers see the Office of the Public Sector's website.

Responsibilities and rights under other State legislation

Additional responsibilities and rights for public sector workers are contained under separate Acts relevant to the organisation or agency, for example the Health Care Act 2008 (SA).

Public Sector Enterprise Agreements

One of the main enterprise agreements covering the public service is the South Australian Wages Parity Agreement and is available on the Office for the Public Sector website.

Other enterprise agreements apply for specific sectors of the Public Service , for example, those working in Schools and ambulance officers. All awards and enterprise agreements under the state system available from the South Australian Employment Tribunal website.


SA Police are covered by the Police Act 1998 (SA) and the Police Complaints and Discipline Act 2016 (SA).

See further: Complaints against police

Professional Codes of Conduct

Lawyers and Health Professionals also have codes of conduct linked to their profession. Those are covered elsewhere in the handbook in the chapter on Complaints.

Further information is available on the Office of the Public Sector website.

State Public Sector Workers  :  Last Revised: Wed Sep 20th 2017
The content of the Law Handbook is made available as a public service for information purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal advice. See Disclaimer for details. For free and confidential legal advice in South Australia call 1300 366 424.