OCTOBER 6, 2020 – The Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union (AMWU) has slammed tonight’s Federal Budget as unambitious and unimaginative. The Union is calling for the Federal Government to reintroduce fully-funded universal free early childhood education, invest in our aged care system, and permanently raise the rate of JobSeeker while abolishing mutual obligations.
“The budget should be a reflection of our collective priorities, but once again this Government has got its priorities all wrong”, said AMWU National Secretary Steve Murphy.
The budget figures reveal that the Government expects the Wage Price Index to remain below 2.5 per cent over the next four years, while GDP is expected to grow by ten per cent. In real terms, the budget predicts workers will not receive a pay rise in the next four years.
“For a record breaking price tag, this budget has delivered almost nothing for workers”, Mr Murphy said.
“The Government is pursuing its ideological obsession with tax cuts at the expense of investing in our social services, our communities, and our manufacturing industry.
“A tax cut is not a pay rise. Workers got us through the COVID-19 crisis, keeping food on our tables and essential medical supplies in our hospitals. They deserve better than another four years without a pay rise.
“We have a once in a generation opportunity to invest in the social assets that will improve Australians’ quality of life for decades to come.
“Instead we’ve got tax cuts that will bake in future service cuts, and a plan to spend billions of dollars on a gas pipe-dream that won’t fix unemployment, won’t solve the climate crisis, and won’t lower power prices.
“The way to stimulate our economy and grow jobs is by being bold.
“The government should redirect the funds allocated to the gas industry to support manufacturing, gold plate our social assets, and raise the rate of JobSeeker permanently, instead of using the budget to line the pockets of their mates in big business”, Mr Murphy said.