MORE PAY: Child safety workers from the Together Union gathered outside Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher's office on Wednesday morning to protest  low wages.
MORE PAY: Child safety workers from the Together Union gathered outside Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher's office on Wednesday morning to protest low wages. Matt Taylor GLA190918PROT

WATCH: Gladstone's turn to strike over wage offer

THEY look after the most vulnerable children in society and are often paid half of what a teacher receives per year.

Child safety workers have been conducting rolling strikes across the state since the beginning of the month and it was Gladstone's turn on Wednesday morning.

About 30 workers connected with the Together Union turned up in protest over wages in front of Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher's office.

Together Union organiser Ashleigh Saunders said the industrial action was over the State Government's zero per cent wage offer.

"Our members have been bargaining since mid this year with the government and department," Ms Saunders said.

"While they haven't moved on substantial industry claims our members have relating to conditions, it's further disappointing to see that the State Government is not increasing public service wages.

"Members endorsed the action in front of Glenn Butcher's office as he's their local representative, and also in his capacity as assistant treasurer they want him to meet with them and explain why they are only getting a zero per cent wage increase."

Mr Butcher wasn't aware the protest was taking place in front of his office until he saw photos on social media.

"They are more than welcome to make a noise about what they're protesting," he said.

"This is happening state wide and obviously Gladstone has now participated to stake their case."

Mr Butcher said he'd spoken with Minister for Industrial Relations Grace Grace regarding the issue.

Ms Grace said the union's claims members had been offered a zero per cent wage increase were incorrect and misleading.

"The Palaszczuk Government is committed to bargaining in good faith and providing public servants with decent wage increases," Ms Grace said.

"In line with the Government's Wages Policy, in this current round of bargaining the wage offer for all agreements is 2.5 per cent per annum over three years - not zero.

"A unique feature of Queensland Industrial Relations Act is the provision which flows on expired certified agreement rates of pay into state award rates of pay to ensure that award wages are a true safety net to certified agreements.

"Unfortunately, the Together Union is trying to exploit our policy of no-disadvantage by claiming both the 2.5 per cent and the Stage Wage Case 3.5 per cent outcome.

"This is double-dipping which no other worker in Queensland or Australia is able to do.

"Clearly this has not been explained by Together Queensland to its members in the public sector."

 

30 child safety workers gathered outside Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher's office on Wednesday to protest against low wages.
30 child safety workers gathered outside Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher's office on Wednesday to protest against low wages. Matt Taylor GLA190918PROT

Ms Saunders said the salaries of child safety workers ranged between $46,000-$60,000 per year.

"They do the most important frontline services in our community and they deserve a pay rise," she said.

"They deserve to be in pay parity with other awards in the public service.

"Child safety workers help the most vulnerable children in the community and provide support and protection."


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