The real face of compo cuts
When Paul, a Deputy from the NSW Southern District tore his right shoulder he expected to be back at work within a year. He was injured while doing a routine unloading task at work.
Paul’s recovery ended up taking the full 78 weeks. After his injury in 2015 it took 5 months to get into surgery, a common experience.
Between the surgery and his return to work Paul underwent physiotherapy twice a week and his shoulder slowly got better. Having fully recovered he has now been back at work for almost a year, and is stronger than ever.
The impact of the employer’s application to slash compo pay would mean that someone like Paul would have to go back to work or face the sack at 52 weeks.
If Paul was re-injured after 52 weeks, what then?
The employer’s application would also rob Paul of $32,942 from weeks 26-52.
How would you cope?
Workers enter this industry with the trust that there is a genuine safety-net if something goes wrong.These proposed cuts brutally undermine the conditions that workers were promised upon signing up to a job in a dangerous industry.
Until mining becomes risk-free, which it undoubtedly never will, then mining employers have an obligation to workers like Paul to give them fair compo pay.
Compo pay case
Today is the final day of the Fair Work Commission hearing into compo pay.
The case is an attack on the amount of compo pay time that injured workers receive, slashing it by 26 weeks.
This case has been spearheaded by the CMIEG (Coal Mining Industry Employer Group) who were recently responsible for the cutting of redundancy pay.
This group, made up of 13 of the biggest and richest mining companies, is hell-bent of chipping away worker’s conditions one by one.
The full 78 weeks of compo pay are not often taken, but when they are it is a crucial necessity for those who have suffered severe injuries.
No one wants to be off work injured for an extended period of time. Compo pay isn’t a free-ride on the company dollar. It is something workers need, and have a right to, when they are gravely hurt.