Today the Full Bench of the Industrial Relations Commission (IRC) handed down its decision in the Public Sector Salaries case, awarding NSW public servants a paltry 0.3 per cent pay rise.
The IRC decided the increase shall be backdated. The commencement date of the increase will be first pay period on or after 1 July 2020.
The decision comes after the PSA lodged its application in March. Expert economists testified as to the benefits of the pay rise for the state’s economic recovery and workers testified about productivity being realised across the sector as members continue to support the community through drought, bushfires and an international pandemic.
Remember there has never been any formal offer of job security provisions. If you hear about restructures or job cuts, please contact the PSA and we will campaign to protect your job.
“Today’s decision is disappointing,” said Stewart Little, PSA General Secretary. “The PSA strongly argued that our public sector workers deserved the full 2.5 per cent pay increase in recognition of keeping our state safe and to stimulate broader economic recovery.
“This paltry increase does not recognise the work you have done; you deserve the full 2.5 per cent.
“Public servants work in prisons, youth justice facilities, national parks, the Rural Fire Service, Community Services, museums, galleries, Service NSW, libraries, and a plethora of other workplaces. In addition, our public health heroes include the contact tracers and epidemiologists who have contained coronavirus. They haven’t stopped working, they have kept our state safe, and they deserve a real pay rise.
“The most powerful economic stimulus for the NSW Government is its own workforce. The NSW Government is Australia’s largest employer, responsible for one in 10 jobs across our state.
“NSW public servants are a core part of the state’s regional economies. This decision doesn’t just take money out of their pockets – it takes it out of the local businesses they would have spent the money in.
“You can’t cut your way to growth. NSW needs to put cash into the hands of people who will spend it, guarantee existing public sector jobs and then employ more people.”
The union’s legal team will review the decision. Parties have until 23 October 2020 to make final submissions on how the increase will be paid.
The PSA will provide further comment on the decision after we have had a chance to review it in detail.