On 12 March, Commissioner Black referred the ongoing process of negotiating your wages and conditions to arbitration.
The immediate effect of this referral is that any members currently taking protected industrial action must now stop. We cannot take protected action while we are in arbitration.
If you have any questions about this, please do not hesitate to contact the union office. You can read more here.
And here is some text your colleagues can use to send messages of support to the Minister and the DG:
Right now my therapy colleagues are taking industrial action as part of their enterprise bargaining negotiations. I wanted to express my support for their position in relation to the value of their roles and their value to our work educating every student.
We are all here ensuring every child gets the best possible education and that inclusive education is happening in every school.
As Speech Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists in Education these workers work every day to make sure no child is left behind as they enter and progress through school years because of any developmental vulnerabilities.
They are specialist allied health staff with a focus on education and ensuring children have excellent educational outcomes. However compared to the same occupations in Queensland Health, who are also government employees, these workers are paid between $5-$10,000 less per annum. There is not pay equity or equity of conditions for allied health professionals across Queensland. With the advent of the National Disability Insurance Scheme this pay disparity is getting worse and we are at continued risk of losing our experienced therapists.
Qualified and expert allied health professionals are in high demand. If we are going to continue to attract and retain great therapists to work in education and ensure all Queensland kids have access to quality education and to assist educational staff with whole of school programs and specialist programs for students then we need to offer them equal pay.
Equal pay is important. It’s about the value the government places on education and learning and inclusive education.
I thank you for your understanding and support.
Therapists are so important to thousands of students and the educators who work with them. The impact you have on the lives of students is incredible!
This year we are working towards positive change and a better appreciation of your roles within the Department.
The Department in recent history has not taken the opportunity to look at the essential role of therapists or to address issues surrounding your workloads and classification levels. The time has come, it needs to happen now.
In 2017, delegates spent hours and hours negotiating with the Department, pulling together research and reports and lobbying politicians as part of the state election campaign.
We have released the final report from the Together / DET working group who reviewed the key differences between what Queensland Health offer as opposed to DET.
You do great work in Education and you deserve to be remunerated equally with your colleagues in Queensland Health.
Here are 3 things you can do to make sure 2018 is the year of pay parity:
Final report appendices
Remember that as part of your Together membership you have your professional indemnity insurance included. Here is a flyer about the inclusions in your policy.