Legislative Council: Thursday, June 16, 2022


Enterprise Bargaining

The Hon. S.G. WADE (15:10): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before asking a question of the Minister for Industrial Relations and Public Sector regarding the enterprise agreement with the ambulance employees.

Leave granted.

The Hon. S.G. WADE: As the Hon. Michelle Lensink indicated on ABC radio last week, it was suggested the Ambulance Service is close to signing off on a 2.5 per cent pay rise with the government, which will be backdated to 2018. My questions to the minister are:

1. Has the enterprise agreement with the Ambulance Employees Association been finalised? If so, when was it finalised?

2. Can the minister confirm that paramedics and ambulance officers and 000 call takers will all receive a 2.5 per cent increase?

3. Can the minister confirm that the new enterprise agreement will be backdated to 2018?

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Attorney-General, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Minister for Industrial Relations and Public Sector) (15:11): I thank the honourable member for his question. I will check. I know that there has been substantial negotiation between that part of government, the industrial relations section of government that do negotiations with different areas of government. I will check, but I don't think it has been finalised yet. I think there are still stages to go in terms of it being put to the ambulance membership, but certainly I think there has been good progress made.

I know that negotiations had stalled somewhat over the last few years. I will have to double-check, but I think 2018 was the last time ambulance officers received a pay rise. There have been very productive negotiations. There has been a lot of work put into trying to resolve this. I will check on the details about the full range of coverage of negotiations in terms of the officers that the honourable member has mentioned being covered by negotiations.

I am hopeful and look forward to our extraordinary hardworking ambulance officers receiving their first pay rise in many years when finally negotiations are concluded and accepted. It is certainly not something I intend to make a practice of, that sort of megaphone negotiation, by coming in here and talking about it, as I think my predecessor in this area, the Hon. Rob Lucas, would do occasionally, berating union bosses. I think that doesn't add to an ability to negotiate.