Ballarat paramedics reject new pay deal

Ballarat paramedics have rejected a new pay deal. PICTURE: FILE
Ballarat paramedics have rejected a new pay deal. PICTURE: FILE

BALLARAT paramedics will not accept an increased pay offer from the Victorian Government and will hold a meeting next week to discuss their rejection.

Ambulance Employees Australia Victorian secretary Steve McGhie said local paramedics were sick of being offered a raw deal, with the dispute set to continue after more than 23 months of negotiations.

"Again Ballarat members are not happy with what has been put to them by the government," Mr McGhie said on Thursday.

Premier Denis Napthine and Health Minster David Davis announced the updated deal on Wednesday and said the "significant offer" would see sign-on bonuses increased from $1500 to $3000.

The new offer would also see paramedics given a six per cent pay increase in 2014 and increases of three per cent in 2015 and 2016.

"We believe this is a fair and reasonable pay rise and pay offer for our hard working paramedics," Dr Napthine said on Wednesday.

Ballarat paramedic Adam Phillips said he and "at least 20" colleagues he'd spoken to were "disgusted" by the inadequate offer.

"The worst part is that the government decided to publicly release these documents prior to even discussing it with us," he said.

"The offer is still the same as the last one, apart from the increased sign on fee and we will be rejecting it again.

"If the Victorian Government continues to handle this pay dispute like this they will not see a resolution."

Mr McGhie said the union wouldn't recommend the offer to members, but said they were prepared to negotiate.

"We want the dates for the wage increase to be brought in earlier," he said.

"In reality they're only offering 12 per cent and it's not good enough.

"Other major sticking points are that they don't want union representation and they want to be able to move paramedics anywhere around the state without any agreement."

The dispute has now lasted almost two years, with paramedics using slogans written on ambulances to voice their concerns.

The government has also agreed to have union claims about paramedics referred to an independent arbitrator.


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