Gunner Labor Government tries to cut pay and penalty rates

The CPSU says the Gunner Government is treating Northern Territory public sector workers with contempt through the current round of enterprise bargaining, particularly people with families and those working shifts.

The union was formally advised of the NT Government’s offer to staff during a meeting yesterday, and told the proposed employment agreement would be voted on within weeks.

CPSU NT Regional Secretary Kay Densley said: “This so-called offer from the Gunner Government to NT public sector workers absolutely stinks. What’s being pushed on workers shows this Government will cut the take-home pay and cut the penalty rates of the people providing essential public services. It is completely unfair to these workers and their families.”

“We’re talking about people mostly earning modest wages, trying to raise families and get by with the high cost of living that’s faced by all Territorians. The Gunner Government is offering these people more low wage increases, 2.5% a year stretched over four years. Our members have made it clear they want a three-year agreement rather than being locked into this stinking offer until 2021!”

“The Gunner Government is attacking the NT Allowance, which is so important to workers struggling with the extra costs of raising children in the NT. Under the Government’s plans new workers and existing workers who have children in the future would miss out. Children are our future and cutting take-home pay like this is sending a terrible message at a time when population growth is so critical.”

“Shift workers are being shafted by what’s on the table here. The Gunner Government is trying to cut penalty rates, slashing the pay of frontline staff such as public safety housing officers and transit safety officers by taking away critical shift penalties. Our essential Triple-0 operators are similarly being asked to move from eight to 12-hour shifts while losing shift penalties.”

“This attack on NT public sector workers by the Gunner Government is also an attack on all Territorians who rely on the services these people provide. You can tell a lot about any boss by how they treat their staff and this Government has shown so far that it’s prepared to repeatedly attack public sector workers.”

“The Government is setting itself up for an embarrassing failure if it insists on rushing to a ballot on this dud agreement proposal rather than listening to our constructive feedback. NT public sector workers will stand up and show they demand a fair deal. In a recent survey of members, 84% of respondents rejected this same package.”

MEDIA CONTACT: SIMON FRAZER 0409 493 290