Unions win 3% increase in wage decision

The SDA and all unions, working through the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) have secured a 3% increase to the Australian minimum wage and to all modern award rates. The new rates will take effect from Monday 1 July 2019.

This increase will also flow through to many SDA negotiated Agreements (eg Coles, Woolworths Supermarkets etc) which have wage adjustments pegged to the annual wage review decision of the Fair Work Commission. SDA Members should note that the increase will vary if you are currently on a protected or transitional rate of pay.

Whilst the 3% is above the current (March 2019) average Australian wage increase of 2.3% per annum, Governments and business need to do much more to address our biggest single economic problem which is low wage growth. We have had historic low wage growth now for too many years and on top of this further cuts to penalty rates in retail, fast food and pharmacy will take effect on 1 July.

Over 700,000 retail, fast food and hospitality workers will be subject to this reduction in penalty rates on July 1, with a further cut set down for July 2020.

If the Government and business sector wish to boost the economy, they should be backing policies which put money back into consumers’ pockets, not rip it away in the form of reduced penalty rates.


SDA membership delivers:

This 3% pay increase is thanks to your support and union membership allowing the SDA to continue our work to push for pay rises.

Each year unions, including the SDA, put forward a strong case for pay increases in the Annual Wage Review because we know the rising cost of living continues to put pressure on our members.

As the cost of everything else continues to rise, we understand how important this pay increase is but also that wages must continue to be lifted. Unions are the only ones advocating for your wages to increase as this table shows.

Organisation Wage Increase Argued For in 2019



Australian Industry Group


Australian Retail Association


National Retail Association


Australian Chamber of Industry and Commerce


Restaurant & Catering Association



Join the wage fight

The best way to fight for your wages is to join your union. Together our collective voice is stronger and we can achieve fair and regular wage increases for workers.

Become a member with the SDA.



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