Government Workforce Support Announcement
Aged and Community Services Australia, the peak body for mission-based aged care providers, said the Government’s announcement today makes it clear that it will create significant difficulties for providers in regional and remote Australia as well as standalone urban providers.
The announcement will create great uncertainty for providers whose staff are paid in line with the modern award as there is a requirement for the provider to absorb significant costs in the access process.
“The redirection of $1.2 billion from aged care subsides into wage increases is another case of robbing Peter to pay Paul,” said ACSA CEO, Adj Prof John G Kelly.
“The Government intended to increase wages for some of the nation’s lowest paid workers but as we said during the consultation phase, while the Government is providing some funds it is our provider members who will have to find the additional funds to be eligible.
“The capacity of small, independent, regional and rural providers to implement the requirements and cope with the administrative burden causes us concern. We shall continue to encourage the Government to monitor this group and provide additional support to facilitate participation.
“The Government is making a range of assumptions about capacity and viability that does not recognise the diversity in service providers.”
As access appears to be based on capacity, this has become an equity issue for workers and the services where they work.
“ACSA was pleased to have been involved in the negotiations and pushed hard for the employment concerns of the lowest paid workers in the sector to be addressed,” Prof Kelly said.
“It will be up to each and every provider now to undertake an analysis of their capacity to participate in this process.”