The ACTU has today announced that it will argue for a 5% increase in the Annual Wage Review. This would lift the minimum hourly rate to $21.35 and the minimum annual rate by $2008.76 to take it to $42,183.96.

One in four workers, or 2.67 million workers rely on the Annual Wage Review for their pay rise.

The ACTU calls on the Morrison Government to support pay increases for Australian workers as it is the most effective and important thing they could do to address cost of living pressures.

In this week’s federal budget, the Morrison Government projected another year of real wage cuts for Australian workers, with wage growth lagging behind projected inflation and the average worker receiving a real wage cut of $500 in the first six month of the year. An increase of 5% that the ACTU will be arguing for is what is needed to get real wages growing and to avoid further pay cuts.  

Australia has a cost-of-living crisis, with essentials such has housing, groceries, fuel, childcare and clothing increasing rapidly. Workers are struggling to keep up after a decade of record low wage growth under this Government. The one-off payments of Morrison’s federal budget will do nothing to generate the long-term, sustainable wage growth that workers need or stop the nation’s workforce suffering another year of real wage cuts.

Quotes attributable to ACTU Secretary Sally McManus:  

“Our Annual Wage Review claim for a 5% increase is what is needed for Australian workers to keep their heads above water, with inflation and the cost of living rapidly rising. The Morrison Government has projected real wage cuts this year, following on from the $800 cut last year. This can be avoided if they support this wage claim.

“Today we are calling on Scott Morrison to support the workers of Australia and back this pay increase. If this Government is serious about addressing cost of living pressures, it starts with wage growth.

“There are practical things this Government can do to lift wages, but so far they have sat on their hands or pretended it’s someone else’s job. The biggest, and most immediate action the Prime Minister can take is backing this increase and arguing alongside us in the Fair Work Commission that this increase is what workers need and deserve.

“We would welcome his Government’s support. If they don’t support a serious increase in the Annual Wage Review, then they are not serious about wage growth.”