September 26, 2018
Whānau ora kaimahi miss out on social work wage boost
Whānau Ora social workers are upset they won’t be eligible for the 30.6 percent increase in pay for social workers at Ōranga Tamariki.
The two-year settlement was negotiated by the Public Service Association after a working party concluded the role of a social worker in the children’s ministry and its predecessor had been subject to historical and ongoing gender-based undervaluation.
Veronica Henare, the head of Whānau Ora Services for Manukau Urban Māori Authority, says all her social workers have degrees and registration, but they earn less than $50,000 a year.
Their commitment means they work tirelessly, including doing after hours supervision of family visits at the direction of Ōranga Tamariki.
"I would challenge the Prime Minister, also the Minister for Whānau Ora, to come down here to actually see on the ground what’s happening. Come and talk to whānau, come and see the things that we do," Ms Henare says.
She says coming on top of the absence of the zero increase for Whānau Ora in this year’s budget, the growing wage differential feels like a snub.
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