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    Default Salary decrease - is this legal?

    I was employed as a nurse in a certain program and the organization I work for decided to do away with that program and I am being transferred to a different program with a different job description - still a nurse. The new jd is a different level of nurse and the pay is considerably less. About 10-15000 pa. Very about similar job just not assigned to a program. I was told by my manager and HR that I'll will stay on the rate I was employed on however I'm waiting for that in writing and was just wondering does anyone know the laws around this? I just assumed your employer can't do this but I'm getting nervous with the delay in getting it in writing. I can't afford that kind of salary drop.

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    You're right they can't reduce your wage - if they have no other redeployment opportunities at the same level they will have to make that portion of your wage "redundant" and pay you out for that portion- assuming you're happy to continue on the job offered.

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    Default Salary decrease - is this legal?

    It depends on a few factors...assuming you are full time or part time

    Whats happening to your original position? Is it being made redundant and no longer exists?
    If this is the case and you are given a role that is similar but not equal in pay and status then you may be eligible for redundancy. You may be under the nurses award 2010 or a registered agreement like an eba. Its best to check with your HR department if there is a registered agreement in place. If they are refusing this info, you can contact the Fair Work Ombudsmans office 13 13 94. The employer may have decided to offer you an alternative position that is similar in pay and varies very little in status in order to avoid redundancy. If there is an agreement in place there may be a clause which provides for this.

    If your old program based position was not made redundant and still exists and you were moved out of there , with your pay reduced then you may have grounds to complain. It all depends why they moved you out of there. The Fair Work Commission could consider it as termination of employment if there is a significant loss in pay. If they are doing it to punish you, perhaps for exercising a workplace right like taking leave, then it may be adverse action and you can call the FWC on 1300 799 675 to lodge a complaint.

    If they are doing it as a result of bullying and you are still employed again you can contact the FWC.

    If they have moved you as a result of poor performance , they would be able to demote you providing they have followed the correct steps (performance discussions , etc) .. if you feel they havent again call the fwc.

    Dont stress so much about getting in writing. It would be good but It doesnt prevent you from taking any further actions.

    Finally if your current new and old salary are above an applicable award and above an existing agreement you may still be eligible to the above complaints regarding redundancy and dismissal/demotion but you may not be able to enforce the higher rate of pay unless there is a contract and unless you are prepared to seek legal advice. In this instance the employer can decide to just give you redundancy but pay whatever base rate as per award/ agreement. I hope this makes sense, pm me if it doesnt.
    Last edited by Simil; 09-05-2017 at 17:41.

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    Thanks for all that. It was very helpful. It was nothing to do with performance. They restructured the whole service model and the program I was part of was disbanded and taken up in other areas ( very badly I might add!). I have a permanent contact though and I've been in the position 18m . Changes due in June. I'm just getting a bit anxious! They can really try and do the sly sometimes and hope you don't notice. Guess I just keep waiting.


 

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