CORE EB: The government is getting ready to move the goal posts

Posted March 28, 2013 by Vivienne Doogan

Disability services. Child protection services. Corrective services. Schools. TAFE colleges. Aged care facilities. Hospitals and health care.

These are all things targeted for privatisation by the so-called independent Costello Commission of Audit - public services set to be handed over to private corporations to run for a profit.

But also tucked away in the Executive Summary is a plan for the government to completely re-write the rulebook on how your wages and employment conditions are determined.

Their proposed changes include:

"rationalisation of employment legislation to consolidate all core public service employment conditions under the one Act (the Public Service Act)"

"consolidation of the number of awards and certified agreements to simplify the industrial relations environment"

"establishment of a new broad-banded classification system for public servants to replace the current inflexible system characterised by multiple levels and pay points"

"appointment of employees to a broad-banded level within the public service rather than a specific position within an agency"

"adoption of flatter organisational structures to encourage more streamlined and effective decision-making processes"

"a more effective performance management system"

In the meantime the government continues to vigorously oppose any interim wage rise while the Core arbitration process runs its course. This is despite just recently paying a wage increase of 2.2% per year, back dated to 1 July 2012, to Senior Officers and Senior Executives. Today the QIRC released a decision that it does not have jurisdiction to award the interim wage rise sought by our union whilst the government opposes the payment of any interim increase at all. The Newman government's obstructions have delayed your wage increase. We are considering options for appealing this decision (more details here).

We don't know the full details of the government's agenda because the body of the final Costello report is still being kept secret. When the LNP party room gets together on 15 April and considers the full report though, we can be sure one of the things they will be deciding on is just how they can move the goal posts - once again - when it comes to determining your wages and conditions for the next three years.

The government's willingness to use legislation to override the employment conditions won by union members over the years shows its complete disregard for basic workplace rights. This campaign to reclaim our rights has never been more important.

If you haven't already had a meeting in your workplace to discuss this campaign and nominate your workplace leader, register to do so by emailing

Keep a look out in the mail this week for more information about the next step in this vital campaign.

Together we can restore balance to our workplace rights.


Authorised Alex Scott, Secretary, Together.
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