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Equal-pay-for-Equal-Right-Stamp-of-Australia

Equal pay for Equal Right Stamp of Australia

04 Jul 2019  Thu

Australia Post issued a special stamp to commemorate the 50th years of the adoption of the principle of “Equal Pay for Equal Work”.

For decades Australian women workers fought to be paid the same rates as men. n 1969, the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) brought a case to the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Commission (CCAC) against the Meat and Allied Trades Federation (and others) arguing for “equal pay for equal work”.

The ruling of the Commission established the general female award minimum wage at 85 percent of the male wage. Where men performed work usually reserved for women, they were entitled to a higher wage. However, the ruling included the important principle that when women were engaged in the same work as men in traditionally male roles they were entitled to equal remuneration.

In 1972, the ACTU and the newly elected Whitlam Government lobbied the CCAC to re-evaluate the earlier decision granting equal pay to women only in those instances where they did exactly the same work as men. This second equal pay case established that women were awarded the same rate of pay as men regardless of the work, as long as it was assessed as comparable in value.

The stamp design features a graphic rendition of the slogan current at the time “Equal Pay for Equal Work”. The photograph, courtesy of The Age, shows women workers demonstrating during the 1969 Equal Pay Case outside Trades Hall, Carlton, Victoria.

Image Courtesy: https://australiapostcollectables.com.au

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