Aged care workers receive slap-in-the-faceMedia Release
Last night’s Morrison government Budget completely failed to address the problems in aged care, like low wages for care workers and appalling staff-to-resident ratios, Corangamite MP Libby Coker said today (30 March 2022) in Parliament.
Ms Coker said aged care residents, their families and aged care workers across her electorate continued to be impacted by the ongoing crisis in aged care.
“The Royal Commission into Aged Care called for higher wages and more time for staff to spend with those they are caring for,” Ms Coker said.
“What these workers need is a permanent pay rise, not a pathetic one-off payment that most won’t even get, because they work on a casual or part-time basis.
“And now in this budget, aged care workers have received another slap in the face.
“They have been overlooked yet again in a budget which completely fails to address the problems in aged care.
“Aged care workers do some of the most important and compassionate work in our communities and yet they get paid $21 per hour; less than someone who stacks shelves in a supermarket. This must change if we are to retain and attract skilled aged care workers to the sector.
“Donna is a personal care attendant in a local aged care facility. She spoke passionately at a recent community forum I held in Armstrong Creek.
“Donna spoke about low wages, insecure work, and the frustration of being unable to properly care for frail, elderly, and vulnerable residents.
“Donna’s words at the community forum included:
I love my job. I wanted to make lives better but now we are facing a roadblock. We’ve got six minutes to put each resident to bed each night.
“Donna’s hourly rate has only increased by $7 in the 11 years she has been employed in the aged care sector. She earns $21 per hour. This is a disgrace,” Ms Coker said.
“She said more staff are desperately needed to improve resident-worker ratios. Currently in the high-level care unit she works in, there is only one staff member for 12 residents.
“This makes it hard for Donna to change a soiled continence pad, give medicines and carefully wash a frail resident before bedtime.
“The Morrison government is refusing to do anything to help Donna and Australia’s aged care workers.
“The coalition has refused to implement the recommendations from the Royal Commission, and it is our elderly relatives and loved ones who are suffering.
“This is unacceptable. It is time for a government that will cares about our aged care workers, our vulnerable elderly citizens and their families.
“It is time for an Albanese Labor government.”Share Tweet