A year of big wins for aged care nurses

2010 saw some great wins for aged care members in securing Enterprise Agreements that offered good pay and conditions. The Lamp takes a look at some of the highlights.

February 2010

Members at Lend Lease Primelife won a total pay increase of 14% over three years in one of the first Enterprise Agreements negotiated with a large, for-profit employer. Three weeks’ paid maternity and adoption leave and paid union training leave were among the other benefits.

Staff at Living Care’s eight aged care facilities in NSW celebrated their inaugural Enterprise Agreement, which saw them gain a minimum 3% pay increase over two years, nine weeks’ paid maternity leave and a process to identify and resolve workload issues.

July 2010

More than 26 for-profit employers adopted the first ever ‘template’ Enterprise Agreement negotiated by the NSWNA in June. The agreement, which was signed off by employer body the Aged Care Association of Australia (ACAA), serves the whole of the for-profit sector and by July covered 78 residential aged care facilities owned by 26 employers.

August 2010

Members working at Bupa’s 21 facilities in NSW took a stand and voted overwhelmingly to reject a sub-standard agreement offered by the company.

September 2010

By September, the number of for-profit employers who had signed up to the ACAA template increased to 40.

October 2010

Three years of campaigning paid off for members at Domain, as the for-profit provider offered its first Enterprise Agreement, which saw pay rises of 3.7% in 2011 and 2012.

November 2010

After rejecting a sub-standard agreement in July, members at Bupa finally secured a good outcome, with a pay increase of 3.5% over three years and reinstatement of previously lost allowances and conditions.

After an initial bumpy start, negotiations between the NSWNA and Riviera proceeded smoothly to deliver a high-quality Enterprise Agreement. Nurses at the employer’s 14 facilities in NSW were ‘thrilled’ with much improved conditions, particularly a process to fix workload issues.