Qld teachers still prepared to strike

July 26, 2009

The Queensland Teachers Union (QTU) is assessing a new pay offer put forward on July 24 in the Industrial Relations Commission by the Anna Bligh state Labor government.

The government had originally proposed a 12.5% pay rise over three years, but has now made a revised offer. The teachers union is seeking an 18% pay rise to bring wages in line with other states.

"There is an offer on the table. That offer is being discussed in the commission," QTU state president Steve Ryan told the July 25 Courier Mail. He said the union would decide on July 27 whether to accept the new deal or continue industrial action.

Planned industrial action was suspended on July 22 because of the new offer. Rolling strikes had been scheduled for July 29, July 30 and August 5.

On July 24, Ryan said teachers were "prepared to take as much strike action as we can take" if the government didn't provide salaries that matched teachers interstate. He said that any offers involving "parity across the teaching scales with other states" would be considered.

He accused the government of blundering their way through the dispute, and said the union had bent over backwards to accommodate it.

Bligh and Education Minister Geoff Wilson refused to guarantee that teachers would be offered higher wages. Instead, they have suggested the government's offer could be altered so more money was paid in the first year of the agreement, or, so some teachers receive bigger pay rises than others.

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