WA public service in for pay rise, union cautious on details

By Jackson Graham

Sunday December 19, 2021

Mark McGowan
West Australian Treasurer and Premier, Mark McGowan. (AAP Image/Richard Wainwright)

WA public servants could see a 2.5% pay rise for the next two years and receive a bonus, as the government reveals it is removing a $1000 cap on individual wage growth. 

The Community and Public Sector Union says the offer falls short of what it advocated for in a budget submission but acknowledged it did represent a shift in the government’s position. 

The government says the change would see more than 150,000 public sector employees receive above-CPI wage rises of 2.5% and give them a choice of a one-off $1000 bonus or an additional 0.25% increase. 

The government points out the bonus would allow an employee earning less than $65,000 to receive a more than 4% pay rise. 

WA has had a $1000 cap on public sector wages as a policy aimed at repairing the state’s finances, but the state now has a stronger-than-expected financial position after being the only state to record a surplus this year. 

Premier Mark McGowan said he was pleased to announce a “sensible and sustainable” public service wages policy. 

“Our public sector workers, including nurses, teachers, police and public servants, have worked hard to make Western Australia the safest place to live — with one of the strongest economies in the world — throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said. 

“Our strong financial and economic performance throughout COVID-19 means that we are now in a position to deliver a new wages policy, which is sustainable and deliverable, and rewards the efforts of our public sector workers.” 

CPSU branch secretary Rikki Hendon said the union was yet to see the wages policy in full. 

“The devil will be in the detail,” Hendon said. 

“We look forward to receiving and reviewing the framework in full to better understand the scope it provides to bargain for meaningful outcomes for public sector workers.”


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