Hundreds of workers from Blue Care/Wesley Mission Brisbane – and their supporters – stage a rally in the centre of Brisbane today to demand respect for their work and the end to the squeeze on their wages, time and work/life balance.
Shouting “Blue Care Be Fair”, and “Blue Care it’s not too late. It’s time for you to negotiate.” workers outside the head office made it clear that Blue Care should start treating its workers like a faith-based organisation would be expected to.
The workers are angry that management at Blue Care are trying to force them to 1 hour shifts, split shifts and insecure work under a new workplace agreement.
The workers, members of aged care union United Voice, want to establish a fair workplace agreement but Blue Care/Wesley Mission Brisbane continues to put forward dirty deals that will reduce their pay and entitlements instead.
“Blue Care/Wesley Mission Brisbane have made it clear that they plan to cut costs and out source at the expense of long term, hardworking staff and it’s just not acceptable,” said Damien Davie, Aged Care Coordinator at United Voice Queensland. “
Management at Blue Care are attempting to strip take home pay and conditions, implement one-hour shifts, contracting out cleaning jobs. The workers have said “No” to this attack by voting down the management-proposed employment agreement, but now management are engaging in delaying tactics.
General Secretary of the Queensland Council of Unions Ros McLennan was there to lend her support to the gathering saying that aged care was a sector that deserved more, not less.
“We are all touched by the aged care sector at some time in our lives, whether it is our family, our friends, or even ourselves. For this reason, at least we can all agree that the workers who do such great work, and sacrifice so much to look after their patients are given recognition, reward and respect they deserve,” Ms McLennan said.