Jul 03, 2024

ANMF Expresses Disappointment Over Delayed Pay Increase for Nurses

ANMF Expresses Disappointment Over Delayed Pay Increase for Nurses
The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) has voiced its frustration over the continued uncertainty surrounding pay increases for nurses in aged care. [iStock].

The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) has voiced its frustration over the continued uncertainty surrounding pay increases for nurses in aged care, despite recent decisions by the Fair Work Commission (FWC) that have provided some clarity for other aged care workers.

The FWC ruled that direct care workers would receive a 50% increase in their award wage starting 1 January 2025, with the remaining 50% to be implemented from October 2025. Indirect care workers, including cleaners and administration staff, are set to receive their full wage increase from January next year.

While the ANMF welcomes this decision, it has expressed disappointment that nurses in aged care are still awaiting a final outcome on their pay rise. The federation had argued for immediate wage increases for all aged care employees, emphasising that “aged care workers have been subsidising the profit margins of their employers, the Commonwealth budget, and taxpayer, for some time.”

However, the FWC found the Commonwealth’s request for a staggered wage increase reasonable, considering the recent 15% interim award rate increase and the annual wage review increase. Despite these justifications, the ANMF remains concerned about the delay in additional pay increases for enrolled nurses (ENs) and registered nurses (RNs).

ANMF Federal Secretary Annie Butler highlighted the need for a swift resolution: “Additional pay increases for enrolled nurses (ENs) and registered nurses (RNs) are still being considered by the FWC in both the Aged Care work value case and a separate Work Value Case made by the ANMF for all employees covered by the Nurses Award 2020.”

The federation is hopeful that a decision will be reached soon to ensure that all nurses working in Australia’s aged care system receive a long-overdue and well-deserved wage increase.

“The ANMF hopes a result can be achieved quickly so that all nurses working in Australia’s aged care system finally receive a long-awaited and much-deserved increase to award wages,” Butler said.

The uncertainty over pay increases has been a source of frustration for many in the industry. While the certainty over the pay rise dates for direct and indirect care workers is a step forward, the delay in finalising pay increases for nurses remains a significant concern.

The FWC’s full decision can be viewed on its website, providing detailed information on the staggered pay increases and the ongoing considerations for nurses’ wage adjustments.

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