News

Modern Award Update Jan 2012

FWA sets date for operation of the Modern Award

But no decision on equal pay yet 

Deadline for every SACS worker to be re-classified now set at July 1st.

In this special edition of SACS e-news we will explain the decision by Fair Work Australia to delay the implementations of parts of the Modern Award. 

What does this mean for my wages? 

What happens to penalty rates and loadings? 

Are you Equal Pay Ready? 

This week Fair Work Australia (FWA) issued a decision that agrees to delay the implementation of the Modern Award wages, classifications, penalties and loadings until 1 July 2012 while we await the final decision in our Equal Pay case.

This is a very important decision as it:

·         Secures all SACS workers a wage increase from 1 July 2012
·         Helps set a clear time line for all members to become Equal Pay ready and move to the
          outcomes of the equal pay case when the decision on the case is issued by FWA

What does this mean for my wages?

You will receive a wage increase on 1 July 2012. You will not need to do anything to receive this wage increase. However all workers will need to use their ASU membership “Key” between March and June to prepare their application for transition to the Modern Award classifications. Moving to the Modern Award classifications will NOT change your wages but must be done properly to ensure that you receive the full benefits of the Equal Pay case. All ASU members will receive their “key” to equal pay which will assist you in doing this. There are more details on this further in this bulletin.

What happens to penalty rates and loadings?

You will keep your current penalty rates and loadings until 1 July 2012. You will then begin to transition to the Modern Award penalty rates in a phased in way over two years. All ASU members will receive further details about this in the coming weeks.

What does this mean for Equal Pay?

FWA’s decision means that all SACS workers will keep their current wages and classifications, penalties and loadings until 1 July 2012. On 1 July 2012 all SACS workers will need to be reclassified on to the Modern Award classification structure. Please read on for details on how to go about this. When you move to the Modern Award classification structure you will NOT move to the Modern Award pay rates. You will keep your current NSW SACS Pay rate AND receive a wage increase in line with the National wage decision (the annual minimum wage decision that FWA issues each year applicable from 1 July 2012).

You do not need to do anything on reclassification yet. We will all need to spend between March and 1 July ensuring that we are reclassified properly and that we are Equal Pay Ready. If you are not classified correctly on 1 July 2012 you will not receive the full benefits of the Equal Pay decision.

Are you Equal Pay Ready?

How do I get “The Key” to Equal Pay?

Every SACS worker in NSW will need to be reclassified onto the Modern Award classification structure. The ASU and most employers have reached agreement on how this is to occur. Every worker will need to make an application to be reclassified to a particular level on the Modern Award (Social, Community, Home Care and Disability Services Award - SCHADS) classification structure.

These applications must be filed with your employer by 1 May 2012. It is important that you get your application right; otherwise you may be classified at the incorrect level and will not receive the full benefits of the Equal Pay case.

All ASU members will receive a “key” to Equal Pay in early March 2012. Your key will enable you to access a members’ only service from 1 March 2012 which will assist you to clearly and simply make the best application for re classification. This Key will only be available to ASU members. If you or your colleagues have not yet joined the ASU; join today and you will be able to access the Key to Equal Pay. If you are already an ASU member here are some things that you can do from today to start becoming Equal Pay Ready

What do I need to do now?

All ASU members need to be getting themselves ready to make their applications for reclassification. You will make your application between March and May this year. To be able to properly complete your application and ensure that you are classified properly, you will need to gather some very important information between now and March. All ASU members are advised to start collecting the following information between now and 1 March 2012 to ensure that you are Equal Pay Ready:

  1. Your current classification level under your agreement or the NSW SACS Award
  2. Your anniversary date of employment (this is the date that you commenced employment with your current employer and / or the date that you commenced employment with your employer your current job)
  3. You current job description
  4. A list of duties and responsibilities that you regularly fulfill and that are not identified in your job description (if you have a significant number of these you may wish to start keeping a record of when you do this work.


If you take these four easy steps you will be ready to receive your “Key” to Equal Pay on 1 March 2012 and your wage increase on 1 July 2012. All members will receive further information about this process in the coming weeks.

Only ASU members will have the Key to Equal Pay – Invite your co-workers to join the ASU Today!