Over 300,000 people work in Australia’s social and community service industries, mostly women in non-government organisations doing work that is essential to meeting social, economic, health and cultural needs, and to promoting wellbeing and inclusion. This report provides detailed insight into what these workers do in their work, and how their work is characterised, classified and paid in the context of the regulatory arrangements set by the Social, Community, Home Care & Disability Services (SCHADS) Award. Survey data from 3122 social and community service workers shows the ways this feminised workforce remains susceptible to underclassification, a form of undervaluation. An appropriate classification structure is needed to ensure workers’ skills and contributions are recognised and rewarded, to help achieve gender pay equity and sustain Australia’s care and support economy.

Research Centre

Social Policy Research Centre

Research Area

Care, Measures of Social Inequality and Wellbeing