The Fair Work Commission recently announced important changes to the SCHADS Award (which sets minimum standards for workers in home care, disability services, community agencies, and other vital services) as part of its award review process. This culminates several years of research and advocacy by unions representing workers in these sectors, aimed at improving job quality and stability in these vital but undervalued positions. The Centre for Future Work provided expert testimony to the Commission as part of its review.
We recently hosted a special webinar to discuss the Commission’s changes, their significance, and what comes next in the struggle to improve and properly value work in human services.
The webinar featured two representatives from the Australian Services Union, which was centrally involved in the campaign for these changes: Emeline Gaske, Assistant National Secretary for the ASU, and Michael Robson, National Industrial Coordinator. They reviewed the economic and policy context for the review, the specific changes that have been announced, how they will be implemented, and the next steps in lifting the quality of work in these vital sectors. The conversation was chaired by our Policy Director for Industrial and Social issues, Dr. Fiona Macdonald.