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Life on edge as new divide ignored

 The Fair Work Commission’s recent wage review may have struck an increased pay deal for low-paid workers but its decision overlooks the growth of a worrying new divide in the Australian workforce.With the rise and rise of the insecure worker, the issue has become less about adequate safety nets and more about the power relationship between employee and employer, the way that shapes the work contract, and the increase in a ‘disposable worker’ syndrome.But while an ACTU campaign is trying to draw attention to insecure work growth, the development of a ‘core’ and ‘periphery’ workforce has largely been ignored.Waging warThere are about 1.5 million low-paid workers who rely on the Fair Work Commission’sAnnual Wage Review to protect their living standards: almost one in six of Australia’s 9.5 million employees. Many do not belong to unions but the ACTU represents their interests to the commission’s...