02 December 2004
Urgent Funds Needed for Aged Care Sector
Unions are calling for increased Government funding to ensure that elderly people are cared for by a highly-skilled and well-paid workforce.
Today the health select committee has recommended more money and paid training for caregivers who look after elderly people.
Unions supported the select committee’s acknowledgement of chronic under-funding in the aged-care sector.
“Low wages and conditions have resulted in a turnover rate of between 30 and 40 per cent in the sector,” said CTU social policy analyst Jack Byrne. “We welcome the select committee’s recommendations to fund caregiver training and ensure trained caregivers then receive higher wages.”
The Government needed to act on the committee’s recommendations urgently as the aged-care sector was in a crisis that impacted on the health and well-being of thousands of vulnerable elderly people, Jack Byrne said.
“Unions and aged care providers who met with senior Ministers this week are keen to see the establishment of a working party so that funding issues in the sector can be addressed in next year’s Budget.”