WA’s lowest paid health workers set for a pay rise under Federal Government package

Tuesday 05 Mar 2013

The Federal Government's $1.2 billion wage boost for aged care workers across the country would benefit some of the sector's lowest paid staff in WA.

From the 1st of July, aged care workers employed by providers who met the terms and conditions of the Aged Care Workforce Compact would receive better pay and conditions.

To qualify for the funds, aged care providers would have to pay minimum annual wage increases and have Enterprise Bargaining Agreements in place.

HSUWA Secretary Dan Hill said he expected most WA providers would meet the conditions.

"HSUWA looks forward to working with state aged care providers to deliver long overdue improvements for aged care workers," he said.

"Unions and their members have been campaigning hard for reform in the sector and their hard work is finally going to be rewarded."

Mr Hill said the campaign for better wages and conditions had been launched to address a looming shortage of aged care workers.

The Productivity Commission estimated that to meet demand, 980,000 aged care workers would be required in Australia by 2050, meaning the sector needed more than 500,000 additional workers.

"In order for the industry to attract that many workers, they have to be paid properly," said Mr Hill.

"With the cost of living pressures in Western Australia, aged care workers can barely even keep their heads above water."

"Today's announcement goes a long way to ensuring that existing staff will be able to afford to stay in their jobs, and new staff will be attracted to work in the sector."

Mr Hill said it was now up to employers to sign up to the Federal Government's Aged Care Workforce Compact to give WA's aged care workers the recognition they deserved.

Nationally the Health Services Union represents all aged care workers including support staff, carers and nurses. In WA members are employed in therapy, health professional and administrative support roles.



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