Some 500 social workers across five employers in the NGO sector will enjoy an average pay rise of 36% following the successful conclusion of pay equity negotiations and Cabinet’s agreement today on funding.
"This is fantastic news for our members which will make a real difference to their lives particularly at a time of big challenges to household budgets," said Kerry Davies, National Secretary for the Public Service Association Te Pūkenga Here Tikanga Mahi.
An average full-time worker will receive an increase between $20,000-30,000 on top of their annual salary.
The settlement covers social workers for Ngapuhi Iwi Social Services, Wellington Sexual Abuse Help, Christchurch Methodist Mission, Stand Tu Maia & Barnardos and marks the end a three year long process.
"This is a long overdue recognition of the important role social workers perform. For the first time their pay will properly value the work they do in helping to build a better future for the tamariki, rangatahi and whānau they support.
"It will go a long way to retaining social workers in this critical sector. We now call on the Government to extend this settlement to the rest of the NGO sector so more workers can be paid fairly.
"Our members are overjoyed with this result particularly for so many who are struggling to get by.
Pania Tulia a social worker for Stand Tu Maia says she will get a significant pay rise and means she can better support her family in these hard times.
"It’s monumental for our sector. It recognises the value of the work we do at last. For so many of us it will mean the ability to put a deposit down for a house, or just buy a new pair of shoes. It really is life changing for so many of us. We look forward to this now being extended to the many other workers in the wider NGO sector."
"We thank all those who put the effort into securing this landmark settlement including," said Kerry Davies.