07 June 2018 2:37 PM
Standing together to improve our pay and working conditions either in enterprise bargaining agreements with employers, or changing the relevant law is what ANMF (Vic Branch) members have done for decades.
ANMF is currently participating in the wider union movement Change the Rules campaign and our national aged care ratios campaign with other ANMF branches. We encourage all members to participate.
Change the Rules
There are many rules that need to change to redress the inequality between working people and big business that has arisen over the past 30 years. Changes being sought by unions that would impact ANMF members and their families include:
- providing secure work – you might have loved ones stuck in casual work, sham contracts, the gig economy and labour hire which offer no paid leave or job security. You might have had these types of jobs while you were studying. Unions want people to have the choice to become permanent after six months in casual work.
- a living wage - we need to change the rules to make a living wage that is 60 per cent of the median wage as a legal minimum.
- end wage and superannuation theft - it is now too hard, expensive and time-consuming to recover stolen wages. We want working people to easily recover stolen wages and super, and have meaningful penalties for wage theft.
- paid domestic violence leave - in our 2016–20 public sector EBA, we secured 10 days family violence leave. The union movement is seeking a change to the national employment standards to include 20 days paid leave for workers experiencing family violence.
National private aged care ratios
If you work, or have previously worked, in a private for-profit or not-for-profit (NFP) nursing home, you will know that there is never enough time to feed, bath and change vulnerable residents. The Federal Aged Care Act 1997 only requires an ‘adequate number of skilled staff’. We need legislated minimum staff ratios to protect residents and ensure safe and dignified care.
In contrast, Victorian public sector nursing homes have legislated ratios because of the significant public sector campaigns over the past 16 years that involved industrial action including banning resident admissions, closing hospital beds, walkouts and large rallies. In 2015 the Andrews Government legislated public sector ratios so we did not have to fight to keep safe staffing levels every time we re-negotiated an EBA.
Every time ANMF lobbies for aged care ratios the powerful aged care employers object. To achieve ratios in private and NFP homes we have to make aged care ratios an issue the wider community cares about so they demand change from our politicians.
What you can do
Standing together is how we will make change. Follow our social media accounts (Twitter, Facebook and Instagram) for updates, and check your emails from us for notices to attend rallies and workplace meetings and links to sign and share petitions.
In the meantime contact the Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and urge them to make legislated aged care staffing ratios an election promise.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull
Phone: (02) 9327 3988
PO Box 545, Edgecliff, NSW, 2027
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten
Phone: (03) 9326 1300
Write: Suite 1A, 12 Hall Street, Moonee Ponds, VIC, 3039