18 Nov 2008

Australian Navy to shut down over Christmas

4:46 pm on 18 November 2008

The Australian navy is to shut down for two months over Christmas.

Defence Minister Joel Fitzgibbon says it will give staff a rest as the navy continues to grapple with staff shortages.

The ABC reports the shutdown will involve all ships not on operational duties and some staff will be allowed to work from home.

The navy says the shutdown will not compromise security.

Mr Fitzgibbon says the Government is working to address staff shortages in the Navy.

He also did not rule out further Christmas shutdowns in future, saying a review was under way into family work balance in the Navy.

Female staff facing difficulties arranging childcare have been told they can work from home for some of the time - a measure he described as family-friendly.