Police Wage RoundPolice
Police Minister Jack Elder said today he recognised the depth of feeling in the ranks of the Police over the current wage round.
"I am fully aware of the concerns of Police officers. The best way to produce a satisfactory conclusion to the wage talks is to continue negotiating in good faith with the Police management."
Mr Elder noted that while the Police had unique pay-fixing provisions, they were subject to the Government's expectations that all state agencies would meet the cost of any wage settlements within existing resources. If agreement between the union and the Police could not be reached, Mr Elder said the dispute would be resolved by the independent arbitration process as set out in the Police Act.
"Let me make the Government's position on this very clear. Arbitration is binding on the parties. In the event the Arbitrator ordered a settlement the Police could not afford, it cannot be assumed additional resources would be provided." Mr Elder said he had complete faith in the Police administration to conduct the pay negotiations in a professional and appropriate manner.
A speedy resolution would be in the best interests of law enforcement. Mr Elder said the Government had admiration for the dedication and professionalism of Police staff, but urged that officers continue to show the patience they had demonstrated during the pay negotiations to date.