Victorian Trades Hall Council (VTHC) commends the Andrews’ Labor Government for a budget that is focused on new job creation and delivering services to our community, but the attack on public sector workers and their wages is uncalled for.
VTHC applauds the unprecedented investment to dramatically transform our mental health system – delivering services where they are needed and creating thousands of jobs in the process.
VTHC also supports job creation initiatives that are targeted towards those most impacted by the pandemic - women, CALD Victorians and the regions, as well as new jobs in large-scale manufacturing and construction projects.
The Victorian government must continue to support skilling and upskilling workers by investing in TAFEs.
The Victorian government is stepping in where the federal government has failed by providing $9.5 million to help workers recover stolen wages faster. In addition, in an Australia-first, the government has set aside $5 million to support gig economy workers after announcing they will adopt all recommendations of the inquiry into on-demand work in Victoria.
However, the government has made a poor choice to cap public sector wage increases. VTHC calls on the government to recognise the dedication and commitment of public sector workers, who carried Victoria through the pandemic last year. Workers having more money in their back pocket is the best way to generate economic activity, assisting a more rapid recovery from this pandemic.
Quotes attributable to Wil Stracke, Assistant Secretary, Victorian Trades Hall Council
“This budget invests in manufacturing and construction and also in aged care, community services, health and education, with targeted spending for women workers and marginalised communities. This budget will have a big impact right across the community.”
“For too long, gig workers have been a second-class of worker in this country, and that needs to change. In the absence of national leadership, we are pleased that the Victorian Government has stepped up.”
“Last year public sector workers busted a gut working to support the community through bushfires and then the pandemic. Capping their wage increases is a poor decision and we urge the government to reconsider.”
“It will be important the government honours its commitment to ensuring that public service workers transitioning to take up opportunities in new programs have access to training to secure their employment.”