CatholicCare Wollongong has a new Enterprise Agreement (EA) providing pay rises and other benefits for counsellors who work in Wollongong Diocese schools, following three years of union-led negotiations.
The IEU covers a range of diverse sectors in non-government education and engages with members in these workplaces to protect and enhance their remuneration and conditions.
After a strong ‘yes’ vote, the EA is now with the Fair Work Commission for review and approval. In a year in which the NSW south coast has experienced bushfires and COVID, the valuable work of CatholicCare counsellors has come to the fore.
This is part of an overall EA for CatholicCare Wollongong employees and replaces the 2013 EA.
“Although our negotiations stretched for three years and took much time and energy, they were ably supported by the IEU, and we were delighted, in this current climate, to eventually negotiate a 2.5% pay increase for the next three years plus back pay for the last two years,” an IEU Rep for CatholicCare counsellors Sue Livingstone said.
“Achieving a variety of other workplace improvements was also rewarding. Of course, as always, there are still other things to achieve – hopefully next time around.’’
Enterprise bargaining in such sectors can be especially challenging and member knowledge and experience are particularly valuable in securing EAs which meet their needs.