Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens’ Leader and Treasury spokesperson
The Liberals have nobody but themselves to blame for the industrial unrest set to grip the State.
They have treated the State’s 29 000 public sector workers with such disregard, union members are undertaking rolling industrial action across Tasmania.
When the 2% wages cap was placed on public sector salaries in 2011, the State was in the grip of the global financial crisis. It was never intended to be permanent.
Seven years later and with demand for services increasing, the Premier and the Treasurer have no reasonable basis for refusing to negotiate in good faith. It makes them look arrogant and sends the wrong message to public sector workers who put in the same hours but earn considerably less than their mainland counterparts.
The Treasurer trumpets ‘a golden age’ for Tasmania, but clearly that’s all for the big end of town.
At the frontline, delivering essential community services, it’s no golden age for public sector workers.
Almost without exception, they are doing more with less.
A pay rise for Tasmania’s public sector workers is long overdue. Their work underpins the health and wellbeing of every Tasmanian.
The Premier needs to take control of this situation from the Treasurer. He is in charge of the State Service and he has the capacity to drive good faith bargaining and a better deal for public sector workers.