South Australian construction employees and their employers are being reminded to understand their rights and responsibilities ahead of Wednesday’s planned rally in the CBD.

ABCC Commissioner Stephen McBurney said it was imperative employees who are rostered for work and want to attend the rally get their employer’s written permission.

Mr McBurney also called on employers to not unreasonably refuse their employee’s requests to take annual leave to attend the rally.

“If employees wish to take part in the rally we want to make sure they do so lawfully,” Mr McBurney said.

“If an employee fails to get prior written approval from their employer to be absent from work they may be taking unlawful industrial action. This could lead to possible civil penalty proceedings and fines.

“Likewise employers must not unreasonably refuse an employee’s request to take annual leave to attend the rally.”

Mr McBurney has encouraged employers and employers to download the ABCC On Site app to understand what steps to take to lawfully attend a rally and what happens to their pay if they miss work to attend.

Employers can allow their employees to lawfully attend the rally by taking annual leave, or another form of paid leave.

Employees who choose to attend the rally without their employer’s approval may be deemed to be taking unlawful industrial action.

In these circumstances it is unlawful for the employer to pay workers’ wages for the period they are away from work, or a minimum of four hours, whichever is greater.

Employers covered by the Code for the Tendering and Performance of Building Work 2016 must report within 24 hours any actual or threatened unprotected industrial action by their employees unless they have been given prior approval to take time off work.