The Australian union movement is campaigning for pay rises and better job security after working people have endured five years of no wage growth under the banner of their Change the Rules campaign.
As the Federal election draws closer ACTU Secretary Sally McManus will be touring regional Queensland and meeting with union members in large town hall style meetings to discuss plans to win better workers’ rights to deliver fair pay rises and more secure jobs.
To Change the Rules, we need to change the Government.
Capricornia is one of the most marginal seats in the country. It will help decide who forms the next Government and local workers have been campaigning since last year for better workers’ rights.
Workers and their families in Rockhampton will come along to hear ACTU Secretary Sally McManus and Queensland Council of Unions General Secretary Ros McLennan talk about changing the Government.
Wage growth is at near record lows, with four out of five working people not getting pay rises that keep up with the cost of living.
The current Australian minimum wage is not a living wage, and it no longer keeps people out of poverty.
Forty percent of working people are in insecure work – either in casual work, dependent on contracting, in labour hire, getting too few hours, or in the gig economy.
Workers need the tools and power to win fair pay rises. This includes making our bargaining system fair, increasing the minimum wage to a living wage, ensuring award minimums improve over time, penalty rates are restored, wage theft ended, and secure and equal pay for women.
Sally McManus, Ros McLennan and local Change the Rules activists will be available for media comment at the kick-off event in Rockhampton from 5:45pm.
Kick-off event details:
What: Press conference ahead ofelection year kick-off event in Capricornia with ACTU Secretary Sally McManus and QCU General Secretary Ros McLennan
Where: Rockhampton Jockey Club, Reaney Street, Callaghan Park Racecourse, Rockhampton, Qld
When: Wednesday 20 February, 5:45pm
Quotes attributable to ACTU Secretary Sally McManus
“People in Rockhampton and central Queensland need a pay rise.
“Their pay hasn’t gone up in at least five years and they are struggling to meet the cost of living - there’s no excuse for this when at the big end of town profits are on the rise.
“They need good, secure jobs but the Morrison Government and big business are standing in the way of this.
“People in Capricornia are ready to take action to change the government and win fair pay rises and more secure jobs.
“Locals have been out in their community spreading this message. Wherever I go in Australia, I hear the same story – we are ready for change and here in Capricornia people are willing to take action to make change.
“They know big business has too much power, and they know that when working people join we are mighty and unbreakable.
“Anyone who wants to live in a better, fairer country, who wants more secure jobs and fairer pay rises should attend these events and join the movement for change.”
Quotes attributable to QCU General Secretary Ros McLennan
“There’s a hundred good reasons why we need to change the rules for workers in Capricornia, and these reasons will be part of a social media campaign from Queensland Unions starting today.
"These workers need jobs they can count on and pay rises that keep up with the cost of living.
"Bosses have too much power to shift risk onto workers through labour hire, sham contracting and casual work arrangements that fail to provide the security that local families need. This "catch me if you can" mentality hurts people in Capricornia.
"One major reason is that local Coalition MP Michelle Landry voted eight times to cut penalty rates for workers in this area, at the same time as wanting to cut taxes on the big banks.