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Archive for March, 2010

Action Heats Up in IHC

Over 3000 SFWU members employed by intellectual disability services provider IHC are currently taking action to win a wage increase that they should have received in November last year.

Despite receiving a 2% funding increase from the Ministry of Health back in July 2009 for the running of their residential services IHC has chosen not to pass any of this on to their low-paid front-line workers.

SFWU workers are taking action to unfreeze their pay through a work-to-rule involving bans on non-essential paper work, on using their own private vehicles on IHC business and on overtime.

In the week beginning Monday 29 March this will be stepped up to some sporadic bans on working “sleepovers”, the period between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m. when IHC disability support workers drop from their normal hourly pay rates to an hourly rate of between $3.00 and $4.00 an hour.

The workers are supporting this action because, despite an Employment Court ruling in December 2009 that IHC are required to pay them a minimum of $12.75 an hour for this work, IHC have still not paid a cent extra for this work.

While the union acknowledges that both the wage increase and the payment of the minimum wage for sleepovers are big issues for IHC, it seems like a dippy strategy to simply put your head in the sand and hope that both will go away.

It’s time for positive action on both fronts and that action should happen now!

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