Aged care workers have issued a ringing endorsement of federal Labor’s commitment to fully fund and support the HSU Fair Work Commission claim for a 25 per cent pay rise.

Personal care workers, home care workers, recreational activities officers, catering, cleaning, administration, and other aged care staff represented by the HSU are seeking an increase of between $5.40 and $7.20 per hour to take the average wage to $29 per hour. Some aged care workers are currently paid less than $22 an hour. 

Labor leader Anthony Albanese tonight committed both to fund the commitment and support the case if he wins the May election. 

HSU National President, Gerard Hayes said the commitment was a breakthrough moment.

“Aged care workers had their hearts broken by the Prime Minister on Tuesday. But tonight they have hope,” Mr Hayes said.

“For too long aged care workers have risked poverty or homelessness just so they can do their job and care for the elderly. We have first hand accounts of our members skipping meals and finishing the fortnight with only a few dollars in their bank account.

“The needs of aged care residents have intensified. Aged care residents have deeper, more complex social and emotional needs, in part driven by the increasing rates of dementia. 

“How any politician thinks it’s okay to pay workers as little as $22 an hour to care for people suffering dementia is astounding.

“Our Union has not been shy when we disagree with federal Labor. But tonight we are happy to stand shoulder to shoulder and will campaign for Labor in the coming election.”

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