Source: Public Service Association (PSA)
A delegation from the Public Service Association today discussed upcoming pay negotiations with the Prime Minister, the Minister of Finance, the Minister for the Public Service, the Minister of Workplace Relations and the Public Service Commissioner.
Frank and constructive discussions took place, and the government acknowledged bargaining must be conducted in good faith with no predetermined outcomes.
“Union members will resolve the question of public sector pay rises through collective bargaining,” says PSA National Secretary Kerry Davies.
“As always, that means workers must get actively involved with their union and encourage colleagues to do the same.”
The union and the government agree there is scope to discuss cost of living increases for all union members covered by collective agreements, including higher increases for the lowest paid, and equal pay settlements must be sped up.
There was agreement today that more workers should receive scheduled increases through step-based pay systems. Negotiations enable these pay systems to be implemented.
The possibility of a multi-employer collective agreement for the public service was discussed. The PSA strongly supports this as a way to align pay and conditions consistently, efficiently and fairly.
The government said it will review its pay guidance in 2022, a year earlier than originally announced.
The union took the opportunity to outline how hurt and angry PSA members are feeling in the wake of last week’s pay restriction announcement. The government acknowledged these feelings are deep and widespread.
“We’ve been blown away over the past week to see so many public workers raise their voice and challenge the prospect of pay restrictions. In their workplaces, in their communities and in the media, public servants took a stand and it’s been heard at the very top,” says PSA National Secretary Erin Polaczuk.
“Our response to last week’s pay announcement has required a team effort from unionists at all levels. Change happens when ordinary people are prepared to make it happen, and we will continue to bargain for positive change in the years ahead.”