Switch Now campaign

TAFE Talk: Education Quarterly, Issue 5 2023

Great news: union fees for part-time casual TAFE members have been slashed under the new Switch Now campaign.

For many years, part-time casual (PTC) TAFE members have had the option of electing to pay their union fees through payroll deductions.

Like many insecurely employed teachers, hours worked can vary from week to week, so this option of payment was popular.

Unfortunately, this meant that TAFE needed to be informed of your union membership so payroll deductions could occur. At Annual Conference 2022, delegates voted to simplify part-time casual TAFE membership subscriptions by removing payroll deduction as an option. This ensures membership remains between members and their union, and not involving the employer.

From 1 March, 2023, a flat fortnightly payment of $12.12 will commence as the new fee for all PTC TAFE teachers, regardless of the hours you work. For many members this is a saving of up to 50 per cent.

However, to remain connected to the union, members will need to update their membership information with Federation to include either direct debit or credit card details. Members are advised to update membership details as soon as possible.

But wait, there’s more! By switching your payment method using one of the options below by 14 March, PTC TAFE members will go in the draw for a $200 gift voucher. Become eligible by:

  • calling Federation’s Membership team on 1300 654 363
  • completing an online form
  • completing a Make the switch to direct payments form and posting it back to Federation.

It is well known that PTC TAFE teachers now make up close to 77 per cent of all TAFE teachers and pay is not at parity with our school colleagues.

PTC TAFE teachers across NSW have welcomed the savings that these changes to fees for 2023 will mean. The uptake from PTC TAFE teachers has already been extensive. Even full-time TAFE members, who were still using payroll deduction, have made the switch to direct deposit.

Conversations in TAFE colleges about the Switch Now campaign have resulted in potential members making the decision to join Federation.

The growing density among TAFE members in workplaces ensures our union continues to build campaign capacity.

These changes will ensure our PTC TAFE members will be financially better off and collectively stronger.