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Labor is concerned by reports today that top level senior staff at the Department of Immigration and Border Protection will receive a pay rise, while workers locked in a dispute with the Turnbull Government have either had real wage cuts or no increase at all in the past four years.
Workers at the Department of Immigration and Border Protection have remained locked in a dispute over pay and conditions for four years now – it’s time for the Government to realise its bargaining policy is unfair and unworkable.
Labor values the expertise and experience of our public servants, in the Department of Immigration and Border Protection and across the APS. We understand that these are the people carrying out the work on visa integrity processing and preventing threats from crossing our border. It is important that they are recognised and valued for the critical work that they do.
It is unacceptable that the vast majority of Australia’s public service hasn’t had a pay rise while at the same time, senior staff at the department and Ministers have had a wage increase, and the cost of living pressures are piling up under the Liberal Government’s economic mismanagement.
Enough is enough. The Turnbull Government must listen to its critics and find a compromise that lets staff get on with the job and resolve these matters.
Under Mr Turnbull’s cruel and aggressive anti-worker industrial agenda too many workers have already lost important workplace rights and many more are facing cuts to vital conditions, such as family friendly rosters and domestic violence leave.
The Turnbull Government has reduced collective bargaining in the Commonwealth public service to an adversarial, zero-sum game epitomised by confrontation, cost-cutting and extreme ideology.
There is a pathway to resolving the bargaining impasse but that pathway can’t be paved with cuts to pay, rights and conditions.