UnionsWA has today commented on the WA Budget 2020.
Meredith Hammat, Secretary UnionsWA said:
“The COVID-19 health crisis has had a significant impact on jobs for working West Australians.
“We welcome today’s State Budget which provides significant stimulus measures for jobs across WA."
“The $600 electricity credit for households will both reduce household costs at this uncertain time and encourage additional spending to help our local economy and jobs.
“The investment in TAFE and vocational training is important and will be critical to ensuring our economic recovery. It will help young workers find their first jobs and also help experienced workers transition from industries which have been hardest hit.
“The investment in construction and infrastructure is also welcome as the construction industry employs many people in WA.
“Improved transportation infrastructure will boost economic productivity, reducing the time and cost to working families of their daily commute.
“The announcement three new Wage Theft inspectors is welcomed as a first step to stamping out wage theft.
“It’s a reminder that we need jobs to be created, and importantly those jobs need to provide decent pay and conditions.
"We welcome the additional resources for the public sector, like the additional 800 police officers, however as women have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic, the State Government could have assisted by recruiting more workers in essential public services such as our local schools, hospitals and community services.
"These are services that families and our communities rely on, areas that overwhelmingly employ women.
“The Budget has included a statement of the Government’s wages policy for our public sector workforce, which will continue to cap public sector pay at $1,000 per year for another two years.
“Public sector workers have already done the hard work of repairing the Budget since this policy was implemented by the Labor Government four years ago.
“These are the same public sector workers that did the hard yards keeping the community safe during the pandemic.
“Public sector workers will be deeply disappointed to learn that the reward for their significant contribution is not an increased investment in the public sector, but a continuation of a deeply unpopular wages policy.
“A wages policy that helped our public sector workers wages keep pace with costs of living could have helped the recovery by providing additional stimulus to our local economy at a critical time.”