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Banners in hands, braving the cold, some 300 Canberrans (men and women) gathered outside the Legislative Assembly in Civic today to protest pay inequity in the community sector.
The nationwide rally was timed to coincide with the ASU’s equal pay test case to address lower pay among female-dominated community sector workers.
The Socialist Alliance were out in force and ACT Labor MLA Joy Burch showed her support as the crowds cheered on statistic-riddled speeches.
Rachel Hart said women earn on average 18% less than men in Australia and those in the community sector earn less than garbage collectors and supermarket shelf stackers.
The rally was said to be the biggest since 1972 when the Government legislated for Equal Pay for Equal Work.
Organisers hope to set dominos falling by pushing for better salaries for community workers – a sector traditionally thought of as female specific with an emphasis on care and councelling.
The rally finished with participants blowing kisses to the Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard.