Long service leave (LSL)

One of the perks of my job is long service leave. In addition to the regular, annual leave, I accrue extra leave, which I was able to access after working for my employer for seven years. 

I thought LSL was just to reward people for staying with one employer for an extended time. And, naively, I thought everyone got it. As in all the western world. Not just everyone who was permanently employed in Australia. 

Turns out it’s pretty unique to Australia. 

I love what Wikipedia says about it; LSL remains one of the great entitlements for working Australians. (My emphasis.)

I think we have to give a big shout out to our union movement who fought for all permanent employees in Australia to get this and who have fought for us to keep this entitlement. 

Apparently LSL may relate to our colonial heritage, with Victorian and South Australian civil servants given the opportunity to sail home to England after 10 years’ service in ‘the colonies’. The extended time being necessary given the long sailing time. They probably had to add perks to get people to SA! Sorry croweaters but let’s face it, no one wanted to go there st the start. 

LSL gradually expanded to other states, after federation. When the NSW Minister for Labour and Industry introduced the legislation after WWII, he said one purpose was to reduce labour turnover. 

Well that’s worked in Mr S and my case. I currently have   Mr S, who’s worked for the one employer longer than me and who has worked more years than me without any breaks of service has.  

We used LSL to travel to London in 2015, (in a nod to the colonial heritage! Lol) We used some LSL for our tenth wedding anniversary when we went on a cruise. I also used some to help my son through his high school final exams. Good mum that I am!

So what’s next? 

This year we are taking four and a half weeks, combined with two weeks of school break, to travel to France! That’ll be five and half weeks of travel with a few extra days at home to get ready! Makes the long haul flight worth the trip. 

My plan is to use LSL every second year for a trip overseas. 

  • 2015 London 
  • 2017 France
  • 2019 ???

Mr S would like to ski in North America and visit places in the US. I’d like to visit Italy and do the Cinque Terre walk. 

But hey, that’s years away. Let’s look to this year’s trip. In coming posts I will share my dreams and plans and organisation. 


12 thoughts on “Long service leave (LSL)

  1. Thankyou for your thoughts on the origins of LSL I am going on a semester’s leave in two weeks and I’m excited and grateful Such a wonderful thing. Your plans sound great and I wish you well!

  2. LSL – I can’t imagine it! My library has a self-funded leave option. For example, you can work at 2/3 pay for 2 years then take the 3rd year off and continue receiving 2/3 pay for that year. It is commonly used in 6-month increments. I’ve never had a goal that could be met with more time and less pay 🙂 I can’t wait to hear about your France plans. Hope the French language classes are going well – any amount is good. It creates good will.

    • We are doing the 4 for 5 self-funded, ie work four years at 80% and get the fifth year off too. So in addition to our LSL, we will have a whole year off. But yes, LSL is a wonderful thing, especially for the goal of travel.

      The French lessons are going really well. Even if I can’t talk with people much, as you say it creates good will.

  3. Both Reg and myself are sticklers at jobs (him more than me – he’s had two employers since he left school; whereas I was quite flighty for about six or seven years – I had five jobs, lasting from three weeks to about two and a half years, then settled down a bit – I’ve had two employers since then!) I blew *all* my long service leave when I had Chaos, and the next little bit I accrued when I had Mayhem. I’ve been at my current job for nearly nine years, but Reg has only been gainfully employed for two – we’re never going to manage to coincide our LSL!

  4. My husband has been working for the same employer since the end of 2002. A few different locations, a few different roles, but the same employer.

    So, he is eligible for LSL, but hasn’t taken it. Only last night I approached him and asked if he would like to take some leave. He is quite burnt out and needs a break, so he is going to ask for a week off in October. But it will just be regular leave, not LSL.

    Apparently he has 129.5 days of LSL owing, along with 261 hours of holiday leave and 318 hours of sick leave. But he has always said he wants to ‘save’ his LSL for something ‘special’. When we went on our Middle East/UK/Europe trip for 5 weeks back in 2015 he had enough holiday leave to just use that (and have some left over….). Who knows what he will end up using the LSL for! It will have to be something extra special!

    • That’s a lot of accrued leave! October is a long time to wait for a break, especially if he is burning out. Mr S used to say he was saving leave for something special. I’ve worked on him and he has extended his leave so he has some days just at home.

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