The aged care system is in crisis
Aged care workers work hard every day caring for older people despite poor pay, short-staffing, heavy workloads and insecure jobs. COVID19 has shone a spotlight on the crisis in aged care, but this crisis has been decades in the making. Years of government funding cuts, and providers putting profits before care has failed older Australians.
“All aged care workers need to be respected and paid a decent wage for the important role they do in caring for our older Australians. It’s time for us all to stand up and support each other”
“Jen, care worker and UWU member, Queensland.
We need real change
Recent government announcements in the budget give the illusion of action on aged care but they fail to address the fundamental issues facing the sector.
The government’s plans fails to address the low wages faced by hundreds of thousands of workers in aged care and home care. The government needs to recognise that a well-staffed, well-trained, adequately paid workforce is the single biggest driver to providing the quality care time needed by older people in care.
The centrepiece aged care funding measure of $17.7 billion over five years – or $3.5 billion a year – paled in comparison to the $50 billion in funding needs indicated by the Royal Commission and others over the same period. Furthermore, there is no guarantee the funding will go to care not profits.
The Government's $17.7 billion funding plan35%
The Royal Comissions $50 billion funding needs100%
Aged Care workers from across the country have endorsed these five key demands:
A responsible Government would act to keep older Australians safe.
A responsible Government would address the short-staffing facing older Australians every day.
A responsible Government would regulate so profits are not put ahead of quality care.
A care-time guarantee must give older Australians the safety, dignity and respect they deserve.
A care-time guarantee must:
- Be legally enforceable.
- Meet the quality care needs of older Australians.
- Give aged care workers enough time to care.
Jobs with time to care must give older Australians:
- Trusted relationships with care staff, because continuity of care is essential to quality care.
- A secure workforce in which workers are not rushing the elderly in their care.
- A secure workforce in which workers know they have enough hours to live on.
Quality care for older Australians means valuing the hard work and skills of aged care workers.
Quality care for older Australians means a well-trained workforce with the skills to do their work.
Aged care workers provide quality care and work above and beyond the call of duty.
It’s only fair their voices are given respect in the workplace.
Join our campaign
Our members leading the fight: