Workers in New South Wales should be alarmed by the Federal Opposition’s frank admission that an Abbott Government would actively oversee pay rises for Australian workers and intervene if they thought them too high, according to Unions NSW.

Unions NSW Secretary Mark Lennon said the announcement was alarming.

“Here we have the alternate Government of the nation cheerfully announcing that they intend to be a part of any decision to give you a pay rise,” Mr Lennon said.

“It is an extraordinary proposition, that a third party intervene in wage negotiations to force wage rises downwards if they feel the pay rise is problematic.”

Mr Lennon noted that NSW workers already knew what government ‘oversight’ looks like.

“When Eric Abetz says that workers pursuing pay rises will have to prove that they have genuinely discussed productivity with their employer we know what that’s code for: trading off working conditions and protections,” Mr Lennon said.

“That’s what we’ve seen in New South Wales since the Mr O’Farrell came to power. It’s right there, in black-and-white, in the O’Farrell Government’s wages policy: workers will have to provide ‘cost savings’ in order to secure wage increases.

“In NSW, public sector workers have had their wages capped and are forced to jettison their working conditions and protections in order to stay above water. That’s the sort of approach Eric Abetz is now suggesting for all workers across the country.

“Workers all over Australia should be very worried that this same sort of strategy is now being flagged by Federal Coalition. There is simply no way for workers to win out of this sort of approach.”

Add your comment