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Home News Deal done: government gets its Defence Force pay offer approved
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TAGS Australian Defence Force, Defence Force Remuneration Tribunal
Under-CPI wage deals as standard? The federal government passes its much-criticised offer to Defence Force personnel, putting a flag in the ground for future deals.
The federal government’s tough line on Defence Force pay has been approved by a semi-independent tribunal, in which under-CPI wage increases are now a flag in the ground for other public sector pay deals.
The Defence Force Remuneration Tribunal handed down its decision Monday afternoon on the day that the previous three-year Workplace Remuneration Arrangement expired.
While acknowledging opposition to the deal — a 1.5% increase each year until 2016 — that after taking into account CPI increases will represent a notable cut in real terms to ADF members’ salaries, the tribunal said its hands were tied.
“We have no discretion to vary the quantum or timing of the agreed increases,” the tribunal stated in its decision. Its only power was to make the determination put by the government, or refuse to.
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Harley Dennett is editor at The Mandarin based in Canberra. He's held communications roles in the New South Wales public sector and Defence, and reported for titles including Crikey and the Star Observer.
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Under the revised bargaining rules, agency heads will be provided with more flexibility by lifting the yearly wage increase cap from 1.5% to 2%. Although few offers so far have reached that cap, this may be the only way to get some deals though.
I bet all the ADF will still vote for Tony’s Team Australia at the next election though.