Our representatives must stand up against cuts to workers pay

Our representatives must stand up against cuts to workers pay

The Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) is today calling on the Australian parliament to change the workplace relations rules to protect the pay packets of 700,000 low paid workers.

Following the Fair Work Commission decision to cut the penalty rates of 700,000 retail, hospitality and pharmacy workers the ACTU is calling on every member of parliament to decide where they stand; with working people or against them.

With working people at risk of losing up to $6,000 per year now is the time for all members of parliament to work on finding a solution that protects the take home pay of hard working people in our hospitality, pharmacy and retail industries.

Quotes attributable to ACTU President Ged Kearney:

“Our representatives have been warned: Australian Unions will continue campaigning until working people are protected from any cuts that reduce their take home pay. In workplaces and communities
across the country working people will campaign to protect their take home pay and our politicians will need to decide whether they stand with or against working people.”

“We all know the burden of this decision will be borne by those who can least afford it. The average worker in accommodation and food services earns $524 a week and those in the retail trade earn just $687 - compared with a $1,163 average for all Australian workers.”

“Whether it is the Prime Minister or a back bench MP no one in parliament can hide from their responsibility to ensure that there is a solution that prevents these hard working people from seeing
their pay go backwards.”

“Fair Work rules can be changed — the umpire can be given a new set of rules to referee the game. The Prime Minister knows this but based on his current comments seems more interested in
pandering to his big business supporters than in protecting these workers.”

“The Government intervened when it has suited it do so in the past and now it must step in to protect Australia’s lowest paid workers from this savage pay cut.”

“Any elected representative that fails to act on protecting the pay of these low paid workers will demonstrate that they are not on the side of working people.”

“The parliament must act now and the government must stop pretending it doesn’t have the legislative power to protect hundreds of thousands of workers from losing pay.”

ENDS

Media opportunity: ACTU President Ged Kearney will hold a doorstop at Parliament House in Canberra at 10am today in the Senate Courtyard.