Aged care newsletter

Posted on
May 3, 2021
Aged Care Sector

Your sector update.

HACSU has been at the front of the movement demanding that skills used in the aged care sector are properly recognised and that aged care workers are paid more.

The Royal Commission has proven what we already knew: that Australia’s aged care system is understaffed and under-resourced and the workforce is underpaid and undertrained.

We are campaigning to change aged care for everyone, giving every aged care worker the right to:  

•  Safe staffing levels and time to care

•  A real pay rise

•  Secure employment

•  A safe workplace

•  Ongoing training and development

It’s great to see organisations like the Aged Care Workforce Industrial Council coming on board and considering how they can work with unions to make sure this happens.

Louise O’Neill, Chief Executive Officer of the Aged Care Workforce Industrial Council said in an interview with HelloCare:

“As a society, we value bricks and mortar and making sure your toilet flushes properly much more highly than we value caring for our older citizens. It’s clearly apparent that we don’t value the work of aged care like we do about flushing the toilet. That’s a really sad indictment on our country. We really need to amend that balance, and we need to signal that care is important, it’s as important as flushing the toilet, well – more important actually.”

If we all work together, we can improve the sector for residents and for workers.

It’s time for the Federal Government to deliver real change.

You can help by going to and join the fight for change.  


What to do about short staffing 

HACSU sees and hears the struggles that aged care workers face first-hand every day when we visit aged care homes.

There would not bean aged care facility in Tasmania where staff don’t work short during at least one shift on most of the days in any given week.

Too many staff are at breaking point and management seem unable to come up with ways to solve the staff shortages.

Don’t forget: if you are working short, you need to put in an incident report form to make sure there’s a paper trail documenting the problems. If it’s not in writing, employers tend to pretend there isn’t a problem – or bury their heads in the sand and hope it goes away.

Give us a call on 1300 880 032 or send us an email if you want to talk about short staffing in your workplace and what we can do to help.  


Vaccine rollout changes must not leave workers behind 

Unions are calling for clarity around any changes to the Morrison Government’s troubled vaccine rollout – especially when it comes to how and when workers in aged care will receive the vaccination.

Workers in frontline healthcare sectors were told repeatedly by the government that they were in the 1A group and would receive the vaccine as soon as possible, but months into the rollout large numbers of aged care workers remain unvaccinated.

It is critical to make sure that workers who care for our vulnerable residents are supported to be vaccinated. We know from previous outbreaks that it was the highly insecure and casual workers in these sectors that unwittingly introduced the disease into these vulnerable settings.

The Federal Government must provide transparent information and get this vaccination plan back on track to protect frontline workers and the vulnerable people they support.  


When will Southern Cross Care learn? 

Staff at Yaraandoo, an aged care facility along the north west coast, are no strangers to being in the limelight for all the wrong reasons because of how Southern Cross Care is running their facility from the top down.

Over the last couple of years, Yaraandoo has made the front page of the paper and been plastered all over social media for their massive failings throughout accreditation after HACSU warned them that their cuts to staff hours would have a terrible knock-on effect.

Management don’t seem to have learned from their mistakes, because they decided yet again that it would be a good idea to make massive cuts to hours – this time cutting 150 hours per week from the kitchen rosters.

The knock-on effects were obvious from the first day. Resident care is compromised because carers are now run off their feet trying to perform kitchen duties.

Residents are suffering. Some are not receiving breakfast till 10am, not being given morning tea because there are no staff available to help them eat it, and being left waiting while call bells are rung over and over – and the list goes on.

Aged care providers need to learn that cuts to staff hours don’t just hurt workers – they also harm the people they’re there to care for: residents.

We’re still fighting to get Yaraandoo to reinstate the hours they’ve cut. If you’re experiencing something similar at your workplace, get in touch to talk about how we can help you too.  


Unions call on FWC to reconsider 10 days paid family and domestic violence leave 

Unions have asked the Fair Work Commission to initiate a review to reconsider the need for 10days paid leave for those experiencing family and domestic violence.

Paid leave is essential for people who are experiencing family and domestic violence while also trying to stay at work. The process of leaving an abusive partner and finding a new, safe space for yourself and your family costs almost $20,000 on average and takes more than 141 hours. The Morrison Government’s current provision of unpaid leave fails to properly protect people in crisis.

No worker should ever have to choose between their safety and their income. Paid family and domestic violence leave must be included in the safety net for workers.  


HACSU has you covered.

If you need anymore information, just give us a call on 1300 880 032.

For more information about this or any other industrial matter, members should contact HACSUassist on 1300 880 032 or email or complete our online contact form

Aged Care Sector