Wage theft in pathology

We are witnessing a very worrying trend in medical pathology laboratories, whether they are public or private. A deliberate strategy of public and private employers to employ scientists as laboratory technicians undermines and exploits people and ultimately hurts Victoria’s health sector and its capacity to care for people.

Cases of people with medical science qualifications, sometimes honours degrees, are being employed in public and private medical pathology laboratories as technicians but required to perform scientist work, with substantial duties under the terms of our agreements entitle them to be classified and paid as medical scientists.

The practice of under-classifying and underpaying scientists is not only exploitative, it is by any measure wage theft.

This egregious management practice destroys careers and career progression models in pathology. Young scientist graduates, after years of university study and placements, are forced into accepting employment as a technician, in the hope that they will progress into a scientist position. In this environment too many are held in technicians positions for years working as a scientist and denied a scientist job because employers will have to pay them a scientist higher pay rate.

To ensure we keep health services accountable we need you to report your concerns if you find yourself in this situation. Make sure you contact us at enquiry@msav.org.au – our enquiry email is closely monitored.

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