Nearly 100 support staff walked off the job at Royal Perth Hospital today in response to stalled bargaining with the Department of Health.
The State Government is refusing to formally recommit to not privatise any existing hospital worker job.
Members are also fighting for better job security for casual employees and a wage increase of $50 a week to keep up with the rising cost of living.
Work bans have also been introduced with workers refusing to dispose of rubbish, wash dishes or collect bed linen.
This is only the beginning, with rolling strikes at public hospitals continuing throughout the week.
United Voice delegate Ron has worked at the hospital for over 30 years, and says privatisation doesn’t work.
“For the last 20 years we’ve had that clause in our agreement,” he said.Read more
The Report on Government Services released today by the Productivity Commission, reveals Aboriginal students in Western Australia have the lowest outcomes in literacy and numeracy of any state in the nation.
The report also found the WA average for numeracy amongst Aboriginal students was 70.7%, compared to the national average of 76.2%.
United Voice Secretary Carolyn Smith says at a time when Aboriginal students in WA are clearly struggling, the State Government has made the wrong decision to cut more than 110 Aboriginal and Islander Education Officer positions from the system.
“This government should be committed to closing the gap, not ripping away $4.7 million from AIEO funding,” she said.
“AIEO’s play an essential role in the lives of Aboriginal students and help them to get the best start possible.”
United Voice member Troy has been an AIEO for the past five years.
He says the role of an AIEO incredibly important.
“We try to look after the wellbeing of children,” he says.
“This can mean many things like home visits, it could mean (helping with) food, it could mean pastoral care, it could be emotional care.Read more
High schools in Western Australia are set to be worse off under the Barnett government’s newly released, Student Centred Funding Model.
More than $40 million will be cut from secondary school budgets, to be redirected towards primary schools, with more than 240 schools set to lose funds.
These funding cuts come on top of the $200 million that was cut from the education budget last year.
United Voice WA Secretary Carolyn Smith says it is irresponsible of the state government to allow money to be cut from already struggling high schools.Read more
Hundreds of hospital support workers walked off the job yesterday after being kept in the dark about job security.
Non-clinical staff including Cleaners, Caterers and Patient Care Assistants (orderlies), have not been told what will happen to their jobs when the Health Department moves wards to Serco run, Fiona Stanley Hospital.
Staff from Royal Perth Hospital, Fremantle Hospital, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, Kaleeya Hospital and Shenton Park Rehabilitation Campus rallied out the front of the RPH yesterday, to send a clear message to the Health Department: We deserve answers.
For the past 18 months, hospital workers have been given very little information about what will happen to their jobs once services begin to close down.
United Voice delegate and Royal Perth Support worker Brenda says she attended the action because it was going to affect herself and her co-workers.Read more
WA’s lowest paid workers will continue to struggle, with the minimum wage being lifted only a fraction over inflation.
The WA Industrial Relations Commission has raised the minimum wage by 3.1 per cent, meaning a fulltime worker will earn just over $665 a week.
United Voice WA Secretary Carolyn Smith said the minimum wage may have risen by 3 percent but cost of living continues to climb.
“With the recent state budget we saw the average family slugged an extra $324/yr for basic utilities such as water and electricity,” Ms Smith said.
On April 1 more than 25,000 essential school staff, parents, children and community members gathered across the state to protest against the Barnett government’s massive cuts to education.
More than $180 million has been slashed from the state education budget meaning schools and children have lost essential staff and access to specialist programs.
Union members from United Voice, the SSTUWA and the CPSU/CSA marched from Langley Park up St George’s Terrace to Parliament House, where they stood shoulder to shoulder in solidarity with thousands of parents and students to stand up for childrens right to a quality education.
Hear what United Voice Education Members had to say:
United Voice members who work in public schools and hospitals today spoke to the State Parliamentary Standing Committee on Legislation about the effects the proposed Workforce Reform Bill will have on their livelihoods.
United Voice members across the state submitted more than 90 submissions to the committee explaining how the Bill will affect their jobs and their lives.
The proposed Bill will allow the Government to take away the rights United Voice members fought so hard for in their last Enterprise Bargaining Agreement such as allowing the Government to make redundancies within the public service without offering retraining or redeployment opportunities.Read more
Thousands of children returned to school yesterday amid massive education cuts by the Barnett Government.
United Voice members working in public schools are bearing the brunt of the cuts, with 350 full time equivalent positions cut.
At Hillcrest Primary School four Education Assistants positions have been axed.
United Voice member Jenni, who has worked as an Education Assistant at Hillcrest Primary for the past 12 years, says a number of important positions have been slashed at her school.Read more
United Voice members in schools and hospitals are standing strong, sending numerous submissions explaining how they will be affected by the Barnett Government's proposed Workforce Reform Bill.
The proposed Bill will allow the Government to take away the rights United Voice members fought so hard for in their last Enterprise Bargaining Agreement.
For example, the Bill will allow the Government to make redundancies within the public service without offering retraining or redeployment opportunities.Read more
Are you a United Voice member who works in a school or public hospital?
Finally after months of hard campaigning by members, the Premier has caved in and wants to hear member’s thoughts on the Workplace Reform Bill.
The proposed Bill would override the range of conditions that members fought so hard for in their last Enterprise Bargaining Agreement.
The Bill will allow the Government to make redundancies within the public service without offering retraining or redeployment opportunities.Read more