Letter to the editor

I read ‘Australia’s broken wages bargain’ in October Newsmonth with interest. However, the method of calculating pay increases is not addressed.

Throughout my 20-plus years working in schools, pay increases have always been calculated as a percentage of current wages or salary. So a pay increase of 2% for someone on $100,000 is $2000. For someone on $50,000, it is just $1000. This has resulted in wider and wider disparity in income between workers over the years.

School support staff are now often paid less than half of what teachers are paid, despite the increasingly technical work that they perform. This gap is growing wider with each pay increase.

To recruit appropriately skilled support staff, this issue needs to be addressed urgently.

Is there a better way to calculate pay increases than by a percentage of the current salary/wage?

Could a more equitable system be introduced across all industries to begin to address the increasing gap between rich and poor in Australia?

Anna Conyers
Wagga Wagga