ACTU Assistant Secretary Tim Lyons says Australian unions will use the inquiry to advocate for improvements to minimum and award wages
and to reduce poverty and inequality.
First, an award wage
for apprentices and trainees at May 2009 (the collection period for the SET) was determined, using the following principles.
(21) The QIRC held there had been an undervaluation of dental assistants' work because of gender related factors, and granted award wage
increases of $63.60 per week (about 11 per cent) plus an 'Equal Remuneration Component'.
In short the amended Workplace Relations Act has fundamentally changed the wage determination process by removing the power from the AIRC to set award wages
or to hear national wage cases.
There is clearly room in Australia to provide still more flexibility, for instance by only setting a federal minimum wage rather than a whole award wage
grid, by supporting optouts from sectoral awards, or by further reducing the number of allowable matters.
The SWS enables employers to pay people with disability the proportion of the applicable award wage
that equates to their independently assessed productivity.
The two-year contract will award wage
increases of up to 20% at the top and bottom ends of the wage scales and will apparently make Horizon Air's mechanics the highest-paid in the regional airline industry according to the carrier.
First, the award wage
generally covers multiple employers within a given industry or occupation.
"With minimum wage fixing transformed in this way, the setting of award wages
for all workers on classifications above the minimum wage would also be affected, as award wage
relativities are integrally related to minimum wages," he said.
The Accord compelled tribunals to slow down the rate of award wage
growth, addressing the concern that previous wage increases had exceeded productivity gains and restricted growth.
Even without award wage
increases, many of the low paid could be expected to obtain wage increases.