We don’t need a productivity commision to tell us ECEC is in crisis: The Greens
The Sector > Workforce > Advocacy > We don’t need a productivity commision to tell us ECEC is in crisis: The Greens

We don’t need a productivity commision to tell us ECEC is in crisis: The Greens

by Freya Lucas

November 08, 2022

Senator Mehreen Faruqi, Greens Deputy Leader and Education spokesperson has shared a statement from the party outlining its support for an interim wage supplement for early childhood education and care (ECEC) workers, as proposed by ECEC peak bodies, centres and educators in response to multiple Senate inquiries.


Many in the ECEC sector are speaking out about the workforce and availability crisis already taking place in the sector, which is unlikely to cope with a rise in demand which is expected to occur following the boost to the Child Care Subsidy due to take place in July 2023. 


“The treatment of early childhood educators is a national shame. ECEC staff continue to be paid well below what would be expected of those with their responsibility and skills,” said Senator Faruqi.


“We shouldn’t have to wait for a Productivity Commission inquiry to conclude that ECEC workers are underpaid and undervalued. Nor can we.”


The Greens say the interim wage supplement could be substantially funded by the $900 million difference between the original costing of the Government’s childcare affordability measures ($5.4 billion) and the final cost ($4.5 billion).


The interim measure would fund a pay rise before new bargaining and industrial relations laws were in operation and before a longer-term strategy to boost pay and conditions for ECEC workers is implemented.


“The government should act immediately and provide an urgent and interim wage supplement, while a long-term solution is developed for a permanent wage increase,” the Senator added.


“Centres and educators are basically united in their view that without urgent action to tackle wages, the affordability measures proposed in the government’s legislation simply won’t work. Educators must receive better pay and conditions that reflect the skill and responsibility of the work they do.”


Learn more about the interim wage boost proposal here

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