Greens (WA) welcome Fair Work Australia’s decision on pay equity
Date:Friday, June 22, 2012
Alison Xamon MLC, Greens (WA) spokesperson for women and industrial relations, today welcomed Fair Work Australia’s (FWA) decision on the Social and Community Services sector equal remuneration case.
“FWA’s decision will help to address the economic disadvantage experienced by women in the community and social services sector”, said Ms Xamon.
Last year Fair Work Australia found that gender is an important factor in the difference in pay between workers in the SACS industry and those in comparable jobs in state and local government.
FWA have now determined how much more SACS workers should be paid in order to address the pay equity gap.
According to the Equal Remuneration Order, employees in the Social, Community and Disability Services Industry are to receive an additional 23% at Level 2, to an additional 45% at Level 8, above the minimum wage for their employee level. The increases are to be paid in nine instalments over eight years.
“This is very welcome news for employees in this sector. They undertake vital roles in our community and have been undervalued for too long”, said Ms Xamon.
Ms Xamon called on the government to increase funding to the community sector as soon as possible to enable all employers to meet their obligations under the FWA ruling.
She said that the State Government must also ensure services that are jointly funded by the federal and state government are given adequate increases.
“We cannot allow workers to be disadvantaged because they are caught between two systems.”
“This would not be a problem if workers covered under the Western Australian industrial relations system had similar pay equity protection to that afforded under the federal industrial relations system,” said Ms Xamon.
Ms Xamon called on the State Government to support the Industrial Relations (Equal Remuneration) Amendment Bill 2011 which she introduced into Parliament last year. The Bill amends the WA Industrial Relations Act, allowing pay inequity cases to be heard by the WA Industrial Relations Commission in a similar way to FairWork.
“All Western Australian workers should be afforded the same level of protection in regards to pay equity regardless of what jurisdiction they work in,” said Ms Xamon.