Baillieu’s Unfair Wage Offer Angers Workers

Tim Pallas | 

Thousands of workers in Victoria’s public sector could take tough industrial action with the Baillieu Government refusing to offer a fair pay increase, Shadow Minister for Industrial Relations Tim Pallas said today.

The Community and Public Sector Union has asked its members to take part in a ballot to decide whether it will hold protected action.

“The Baillieu Government’s pay offer of a 2.5 per cent increase is unfair and is well below inflation,” Mr Pallas said.

“The proposed action will have a real impact on services for Victorians but unfortunately the Baillieu Government has left workers with no choice.

“It’s not surprising that unions are taking action when the Premier, who promised to negotiate in good faith, is more interested in stonewalling unions and workers.”

Some of action workers have been asked to approve include:

  • Bans by child protection workers in the Department of Human Services with more than 12 months experience accepting more than 12 cases, while those with less than 12 months experience won’t accept more than six cases, including notifications;
  • Youth Justice workers in the Department of Human Services banning all escorted leaves unless accompanied by at least two staff;
  • Sheriff’s Officers in the Department of Justice refusing to impose sanctions including No wheel clamps, no “notice of intention to suspend “ drivers licences, and registrations;
  • Victoria Police unsworn staff not forwarding penalty notices to Civic Compliance;
  • Forensic Officers in Victoria Police not processing probity (non criminal) sets of fingerprints;
  • Ministerial Drivers refusing to pick up passengers before 8am; and
  • Indefinite or periodic ban on the provision of information for the preparation and completion of Ministerial correspondence.

“What’s odd is Mr Baillieu ran an election campaign based on the cost of living, but is now prepared to offer workers a wage increase of just 2.5 per cent – well below the current inflation rate,” Mr Pallas said.

“Hardworking people deserve a fair wage increase and we hope Mr Baillieu realises he has got it wrong.

“Mr Baillieu’s refusal to negotiate fairly will impact Victorians, particularly the most vulnerable.

“I’d urge Mr Baillieu to rethink his choice to offer workers just 2.5 per cent.”

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