2020 WA Budget: Public sector workers told no fair pay rises on the horizon

Friday 09 Oct 2020

The challenges are huge, but the State budget has wages policy wrong.

As part of the 2020 WA budget this week the State Government announced a continuation of the flat $1000 per annum pay increases for public sector workers for a further two years (pro rata). This would represent six consecutive years in total. For HSUWA members, this would mean a further two years of the policy applying from when our Union Agreement 2020 expires in mid-2022.

Wages policy needs to reflect a commitment to genuinely negotiate fair pay increases that support employees and stimulate our local economy.

The health public sector workforce is essential to the ongoing function of our society, their worth cannot be overstated. Our health workers turned up to work every day and continue to do so during the risks of COVID-19, protecting our community and economy.

Our members agreed to accept wages constraint and help the government in budget repair after the huge debt of the Barnett Government. As the State budget position improves the State Government needs to get its priorities in order and be prepared to negotiate fairer pay increases.

Continued austerity measures in the context of the global pandemic is not going to be accepted by our members years into the future. The idea that public sector workers should just accept it because they are all in secure permanent jobs simply isn’t true. Those days are long gone.

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