Tag Archives: unions

Join Working Mums Australia’s campaign to increase the minimum wage

Today Australian unions have launched a campaign to increase the minimum wage.

The ACTU, the peak body of unions, is  today lodging a submission to the umpire in these matters, Fair Work Australia, asking it to provide a $26 a week pay rise for Australia’s lowest paid workers in 2012.

The submission argues that our lowest paid workers, many of whom are women, have fallen well behind average income earners over the past decade.

They want the minimum wage to be $615.30 per week.  It’s currently just $589.30 per week.  The current median rent in Kogarah, an average suburb in Sydney’s south, is currently $240, which doesn’t leave a lot left for groceries, transport and clothing in any family.

Head of the ACTU, Jeff Lawrence, said in a statement;

Minimum wage workers are the backbone of the economy. They are the people who clean our schools and shopping centres, serve us in hotels, who take care of our elderly and our children. These are people we cannot live without, yet their value is not reflected in their pay packets. We must ensure they are not forgotten.

An awful lot of them are also working mums.

How do we know this?

We know that those people who are ‘award reliant’ (that is they are paid only what their employer is legally obliged and not a penny more) are mostly women, part-time or casual and in non-managerial positions.

We know these workers don’t have much bargaining power with their employer, so this is the only pay rise they are likely to receive.

Even if you’re not directly affected or ‘award reliant’, increasing the minimum wage is a good move because it means that those families are more likely to spend their any income on food, housing and clothing, keeping the economy going for us all.

Do you support the campaign?  

Please share this post, comment below or share your thoughts on our Facebook page.

Tell us why you support the campaign and how it will help you, your family or people you know.

More information on the campaign is available from here.

Working mums think dads get a raw deal

According to a survey of 365 working parents in the UK, almost two thirds of working mums think men are discriminated against with regard to flexible working arrangements.

According to a Workingmums.co.uk survey for International Women’s Day,  65% felt men were not given a fair hearing over flexible working.

The survey also found that;

  • 43% felt they did over 75% of the domestic chores and childcare.
  • Around 40% of working mums had taken a step back in their career since having children.
  • Only 29% had progressed in their career.
  • The rest had stayed at the same level

Women were concerned about the lack of flexible new jobs. A third felt trapped in the job they went on maternity leave from because they could not find a new job which gave them the work life balance they needed. A massive 89% had considered working for themselves to get a better work life balance, although 43% said they couldn’t afford to.

Meanwhile, in Australia, the union movement is currently conducting an independent inquiry into insecure work in Australia.

The inquiry website tells us that;

The last two decades in Australia has seen a dramatic decline in permanent work, and corresponding growth of insecure forms of employment, such as casual, contract work and labour hire.

The full extend and impact of this shift on workers, their families and the Australian community has never been formally investigated.

The inquiry will report its findings to the Australian Council of Trade Unions Congress in 2012, along with recommendations on measures that can be taken to address any problems that are identified.

Do you think dads miss out due to inflexible working arrangements?

Has having children affected your career?

What would you like to see the inquiry recommend?

You can read submissions to the inquiry and see what others are suggesting here.

Great Australian based website Careermums has great information on how to have the ‘flexibility conversation’ with a new employer here.

More of us are working, but most still part time

The Herald Sun has reported today that nearly two-thirds of women aged between 20 and 74 are working, compared with 60.3 per cent a decade ago

An overwhelming number of women remain part time – 45.1 per cent of women, compared with 43.8 percent in 2002.

Only 15.8 per cent of men work part time.

While this research is always interesting, it’s disappointing to see the focus once again on women in ‘high flying, highly paid’ positions such as CEOs and Prime Ministers, when the research really seems to tell us that more of of us are working in small business and the retail sector.

In fact the retail sector provides the best chance of equal pay with women earning, with women earning 93.2 per cent of average male earnings.

So if you want to be paid the same as blokes, work in retail?  Perhaps.  Maybe it’s thet retail workers simply aren’t paid very much.

What do you think? Do you work part time?  Would you rather work more or fewer hours?

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