Pay: the discrepancies are real, says FWC

PPA says the Fair Work Commission has agreed that pharmacists’ pay needs to increase

The Commission is broadening its inquiry to 29 awards for careers which require an undergraduate degree, the union says.

This means that the PPA work value case will now affect degree-qualified workers in sectors such as banking, legal services and higher education.

PPA highlights that its members have won a cumulative 22% in increases to the Pharmacy Industry Award pay rate since it began the work value case three years ago.

The next 2.5% pay increase is due on 1 October 2019.

In its March submission to the Commission, it highlighted the relative discrepancy of minimum award starting pay rates per week, with an intern pharmacist earning $883.40, compared to $952.60 for a nurse and $1,008.42 for a teacher.

Meanwhile a physiotherapist would earn $952.60 and a manufacturing worker with an associate diploma, $1,132.40.

PPA says that the FWC president has agreed that these discrepancies do exist, and has referred an examination across all degree-qualified workers back to the full bench.

PPA president Geoff March said that PPA plans to respond to the Commission “to seek that pharmacists’ pay rise be considered first as the group that brought the issue to the Commission’s attention”.

“It has been a long, hard slog with members providing evidence through multiple stages of the work value case,” he said.

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