Equal Remuneration Order in the Social & Community Services Award

Equal Remuneration Order

Minimum weekly rates for some employees in the social and community services industry gradually increased from 1 December 2012 to 1 December 2020. This is because of an Equal Remuneration Order (ERO) made by the Fair Work Commission.

The minimum weekly rates have increased for employees in the:

  • social and community services classifications
  • crisis accommodation classifications.

They’re also increased for employees who do this work on an on-hire basis.

Minimum weekly rates and increases

Employees get their minimum weekly rate from the Social and Community Services Award or their pre-modern award, whichever is higher.

The ERO also gives gradual pay increases to the following employees:

Social and community services level Crisis accommodation level Percentage increase
2   23%
3 1 26%
4 2 32%
5 3 37%
6 4 40%
7   42%
8   45%

The increases were introduced in 9 payments from the first full pay period on or after 1 December 2012 and the final pay period immediately before 1 December 2020.

Minimum weekly rates for these employees increased twice each year on:

  • 1 July – after the Fair Work Commission’s Annual Wage Review
  • 1 December – an increase that came from the Equal Remuneration Order.

From the first full pay period on or after 1 December 2020, employees in the social and community services classifications and the crisis accommodation classifications get paid the Final Rate.

How to calculate minimum weekly rates

From 1 December 2020

From the first full pay period on or after 1 December 2020, employees in the social and community services classifications and the crisis accommodation classifications get paid a Final Rate.

The Final Rate is made up of:

  • the applicable minimum weekly rate in the Social and Community Services Award, and
  • the applicable Final Equal Remuneration Payment Percentage, as follows:
Social and community services level Crisis accommodation level Percentage increase
2   23%
3 1 26%
4 2 32%
5 3 37%
6 4 40%
7   42%
8   45%

Find the minimum weekly rate for a classification by following these steps:

Step 1. Find the applicable current minimum weekly rate in the Social and Community Services Award.

Step 2. Add the Final Equal Remuneration Payment Percentage increase to the current minimum weekly rate from the Social and Community Services Award.

Social and community services level 1 employees don’t get a Final Equal Remuneration Payment Percentage increase.

The result is the Final Rate.

Example: Calculating the 1 July 2021 Final Rate

Sandy is a full-time social and community services employee in NSW.

Sandy’s classified as a social and community services employee level 2 - pay point 1, in the Social and Community Services Award.

Step 1: Find the current minimum weekly rate

The 1 July 2021 minimum weekly rate for Sandy’s classification in the Social and Community Services Award is $899.50.

Step 2: Add the Final Equal Remuneration Payment Percentage increase to find the current minimum weekly rate

Add the Final Equal Remuneration Payment Percentage increase for Sandys’s classification to the current minimum weekly rate in the Social and Community Services Award:

$899.50 + 23% = $1106.39 (rounded to 2 decimal places).

This is the Final Rate.

Sandy’s minimum weekly rate from the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2021 is $1106.39.

1 December 2012 to 1 December 2020

Find the minimum weekly rate for a classification by following these steps:

Step 1. Find the higher of the:

  • 1 July 2012 minimum weekly rate in the Social and Community Services Award
  • 31 December 2009 minimum weekly rate in the pre-modern award, adding the 2010 ($26 per week), 2011 (3.4%) and 2012 (2.9%) Annual Wage Review increases.

This is the Transitional Minimum Wage.

Step 2. Add the Annual Wage Review increases to the Transitional Minimum Wage.

Year Annual Wage Review increase
2013 2.6%
2014 3%
2015 2.5%
2016 2.4%
2017 3.3%
2018 3.5%
2019 3%
2020 1.75%

This is the Current Transitional Minimum Wage.

Social and community services level 1 employees don’t get an ERO percentage increase. Follow steps 1 and 2 to calculate their wages.

Step 3. Add the percentage increase to the current minimum weekly rate in the Social and Community Services Award.

Social and community services level Crisis accommodation level Percentage increase
2   23%
3 1 26%
4 2 32%
5 3 37%
6 4 40%
7   42%
8   45%

The result is the Final Rate.

Step 4. Deduct the Current Transitional Minimum Wage from the Final Rate.

Step 5. Divide the result by 9.

Step 6. Multiply the result by multiplier:

Year Multiplier
1 December 2012 1
1 December 2013 2
1 December 2014 3
1 December 2015 4
1 December 2016 5
1 December 2017 6
1 December 2018 7
1 December 2019 8

The result is called the Transitional Equal Remuneration payment.

Step 7. Add the Transitional Equal Remuneration payment to the Current Transitional Minimum Wage.

This is the current minimum weekly rate.

Step 8. Repeat steps 2 to 7 on 1 July and 1 December every year until 1 December 2020.

Example: Calculating the 1 July 2020 minimum weekly rate

Buddy is a full-time social and community services employee in NSW.

Buddy’s classified as a social and community services employee level 2 - pay point 1, in the Social and Community Services Award.

Buddy’s classified as a community services worker grade 2, year 1 in the Social and Community Services Employees (State) Award [AN120505] (pre-modern award).

Step 1: Find the Transitional Minimum Wage

The 1 July 2012 minimumm weekly rate in the Social and Community Services Award is $706.10.

The 1 December 2009 minimum weekly rate in the pre-modern award is $668.80.

Add the 2010, 2011 and 2012 Annual Wage Review increases to the pre-modern award minimum weekly rate:

Year Annual Wage review increase Pre-modern award minimum weekly rate
2010 $26 per week $668.80 + $26 = $694.80
2011 3.4% $694.80 + 3.4% = $718.40
2012 2.9% $718.40 + 2.9% = $739.20

From 2011 onwards, round the pre-modern award minimum weekly rate to the nearest 10 cents each time an Annual Wage Review increase is added.

The 2012 pre-modern award minimum weekly rate is higher than the 1 July 2012 minimum weekly rate in the Social and Community Services Award.

Buddy’s Transitional Minimum Wage is $739.20.

Step 2: Find the Current Transitional Minimum Wage

Add the 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 Annual Wage Review increases to the Transitional Minimum Wage:

Year Annual Wage Review increase Transitional Minimum Wage
2013 2.6% $739.20 + 2.6% = $758.40
2014 3% $758.40 + 3% = $781.20
2015 2.5% $781.20 + 2.5% = $800.70
2016 2.4% $800.70 + 2.4% = $819.90
2017 3.3% $819.90 + 3.3% = $847.00
2018 3.5% $847.00 + 3.5% = $876.60
2019 3% $876.60 + 3% = $902.90
2020 1.75% $902.90 + 1.75% = $918.70

Round the Transitional Minimum Wage to the nearest 10 cents each time an Annual Wage Review increase is added.

Step 3: Find the Final Rate

The 1 July 2020 pay rate in the Social and Community Services Award is $877.60.

Add the percentage increase for Buddy’s classification to the current minimum weekly rate in the Social and Community Services Award:

$877.60 + 23% = $1079.45 (rounded to 2 decimal places).

Step 4: Deduct the Current Transitional Minimum Wage from the Final Rate

$1079.45 - $918.70 = $160.75

Step 5: Divide the result by 9

$160.75 ÷ 9 = $17.861111

Step 6: Find the Transitional Equal Remuneration payment

Multiply the result by multiplier:

$17.861111 x 8 = $142.89 (rounded to 2 decimal places).

Step 7: Find the current minimum weekly rate

Add the Transitional Equal Remuneration payment to the Current Transitional Minimum Wage:

$142.89 + $918.70 = $1061.59

Buddy’s minimum weekly rate from the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2020 is $1061.59.

View references

Annual Wage Review increases in the Social and Community Services Award apply from the first full pay period on or after 1 July each year.

Social and Community Services Award

Fair Work Commission Order PR525485 - Social and Community Services Award Equal Remuneration Order following the Equal Remuneration Case.

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