As an organiser for the ASU, Jacqui Ferreira understands how our members can end up doing more work than they are being paid for.

A recent case at the City of Port Phillip saw Jacqui assist one of our members who was doing the duties of a higher band employee without receiving the right pay.

‘I had a member in Childcare approach me around an issue of employment, Jacqui says.

‘She had applied for a position as a diploma-qualified Child Care Educator but was unsuccessful. The member asked me to assist her in talking to her employers about what her shortcomings might be, and what she could do to be successful.

‘When I went through her case, I saw she was doing the job of a Band 4 diploma-qualified person. She was backfilling staff when they were unavailable, equating to 5 or 6 hours of work a day. This did not seem right to me, so we organised a meeting with her manager and HR.  I also went through her performance description: there was no mention of her stepping up to perform these Band 4 duties.’

In the meeting, Jacqui suggested to the City of Port Phillip that using our member in this capacity and not paying her for the higher duties could equate to wage theft – even though the EA said that the higher duties needed to be for the full day.

She also pointed out they needed to provide the member – and others wanting to step up – with more mentoring so the council could use the talent that they had at their disposal, instead of making it difficult for them.

The council would also retain good staff by using this approach.

As a result of Jacqui’s intervention, staff were given the opportunity to move up without having to apply for positions and build a pathway forward for others.

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