NSW Labor has vowed to fight for a promised pay increase to more than 5800 Newcastle public servants, following this week’s announcement that the Berejiklian government plans to cut the wages of 400,000 of its employees.
At 5806 people, the Newcastle state electorate has the largest number of public sector employees in the Hunter region. This includes 2500 working in Health and 1800 people working in Education.
NSW Labor Leader Jodi McKay said, “Gladys Berejiklian has thanked the heroes who risked their lives and served NSW during the COVID-19 crisis with a pay cut.
“This is a kick in the guts for people like health workers and teachers, bus and train drivers, cleaners, security guards and many more.
“Our public servants have been heroes during the pandemic. They deserve a medal, not a pay cut.”
With economic stimulus necessary as NSW recovers from the pandemic, a pay increase would enable much-needed cash to flow into Newcastle businesses.
State Member for Newcastle Tim Crakanthorp said that it’s money in the pockets of frontline workers that is needed to support local economic activity – not the inflated salaries of Sydney bureaucrats.
“In one breath Gladys Berejiklian says we need to save money on public servants’ wages, and in another she’s granting extra dollars to her department heads,” he said.
“The head of the Ministry of Health has had a $30,000 pay rise while our nurses on the frontline of COVID-19 receive hollow words of thanks.
“If this Government is serious about getting the regional NSW economy back on track they’ll put money in the pockets of regional workers.”