CHILDCARE worker’s across NSW walked off the job on Thursday, in an attempt to campaign for better pay.
The protests call for a rise in wages for childcare worker’s, who are paid significantly less than other educators.
Child care worker and centre manager at TG’s Child Care Armidale, Cassie Cooper calls for Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to put himself in their shoes.
“I would encourage him (Mr Turnbull) to come and do a week in childcare and see if he’s happy with the pay rates that we’re receiving.
Early childhood is the most critical time for children, we should be paid the same as other teachers,” she said.
But they aren’t, according to the assistant secretary from United Voice Queensland, Sharron Caddie who represents the workers.
Ms Caddie said they are in fact among some of the lowest paid professionals in the country.
"Educators that work in the sector earn as little as $20 an hour, which is a third less than what they would earn teaching just a few years older in primary school settings," she said.
The action coincides with Equal Pay Day, an annual day that provides an opportunity to reflect on the progress Australia is making on addressing income disparity between women and men.
Recent reports from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) shows that the gender pay gap has narrowed from 18.5 per cent in 2014 to 16.2 per cent.
Minister for Women, Senator Michaelia Cash says while the statistics are positive, there is still a long way to go.
“It is particularly heartening that the latest labour force statistics show female employment levels are at an all-time high, with more Australian women in employment than ever before.
“Getting more women into work is priority of the Turnbull Government and we remain equally focused on ensuring women are entering high paid jobs, leadership positions and non-traditional roles – all of which will ensure the decline in the gender pay gap continues,” she said.
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