Childcare workers will rally in Melbourne to kick off their equal pay campaign.
Educators in the early childhood sector are being paid as little as $20 an hour — in most cases less than those who clean the centres’ toilets.
An equal pay case will be held in the Fair Work Commission, where childcare workers will argue their work is chronically undervalued because they are 90 per cent female.
Childcare operators have warned the $1.4 billion push to increase wages by around $10 an hour would need to be met by government funds rather than fee increases.
Jess Walsh, Victorian secretary of childcare union United Voice, said 80,000 childcare workers around Australia who educate one million children are being underpaid.
“It’s a national disgrace that 50 years since the principle of equal pay for equal work was enshrined by our industrial court, 80,000 educators are still being paid like it’s 1969,” she said.
Figures compiled by United Voice show childcare educators with a certificate three qualification earn $20.13 an hour or $39,776 a year.
This compares with the average wage for the entire workforce of $40.67 an hour, or $80,371 a year.
-reprinted from the Herald Sun