Latest News

PSA Parliamentary submission on discrimination, harassment and bullying in Emergency Services agencies

Sep 25, 2017

The PSA conducted a survey of members in Emergency Services agencies and included the results in its submission to Parliament.

The survey responses indicated a high prevalence of discrimination, harassment and bullying.

The PSA also surveyed members in Corrective Services, Juvenile Justice and the National Parks and Wildlife Service, agencies that perform some functions that are similar to emergency service agencies.

Findings from these agencies also indicated a high prevalence of discrimination, harassment and bullying.

You can read the PSA submission HERE.

Govt ignoring child protection inquiry a disgrace

Sep 20, 2017

PSA media release

The Public Service Association (PSA) has slammed the NSW Government for supporting only 12 of the 28 recommendations made by a Parliamentary Inquiry into Child Protection.

A key recommendation to extend the Auditor General’s powers to ensure accountability of all non-Government child protection organisations that receive state funding was among those ignored.

The union launched its “Safe hands” campaign during Child Protection Week to highlight the crisis which, among other horrors, sees up to 200 children housed by the Government in hotels and motels across the state each night due to a critical shortage of appropriate alternatives.

“The PSA has been sounding the alarm about a crisis in child protection and now the Government is ignoring the recommendations of a Parliamentary Inquiry which begs the question, who will this Government listen to on this critical social issue?” said Acting PSA General Secretary, Troy Wright.

Read the full media release HERE.

Govt spends tens of millions on consultants, tries to block pay rise for disability workers

Sep 19, 2017

PSA media release

The Public Service Association (PSA) has slammed the $10 million rise in the budget for consultants in one public sector agency alone while the Government cuts jobs and argues against a 2.5% pay rise for disability care workers.

“The Treasurer can defend the expenditure on the basis the Government is undertaking “unprecedented and complicated reforms” but what he doesn’t say is that process involves the wholesale sell off of public services in NSW such as the Land Titles Registry, disability and Out of Home Care,” said Acting PSA General Secretary, Troy Wright.

“The savage irony is that many of these Departments are spending money on consultants to manage the after-effects of employees being replaced with consultants”.

Read the full media release HERE.

$50 million announcement no relief for schools staff

Sep 12, 2017

PSA media release

The announcement by NSW Minister for Education, Rob Stokes about reducing the administrative burden on Principals, demonstrates his lack of understanding of how our public schools really function said the Public Service Association (PSA).

The union was responding to the Minister’s announcement that $50 million in flexible funding is to be provided to Principals to employ business managers.

“The fact is School Administrative and Support staff (SASS) rather than Principals shoulder the responsibility for the daily functioning of our public schools,” said PSA Assistant General Secretary, Troy Wright.

To read the full media release click HERE.

At-risk kids in motel rooms – Illawarra Mercury

Sep 5, 2017

Yesterday’s launch of the PSA’s Safe Hands campaign at Coniston was covered by the Illawarra Mercury.

Read the full article Illawarra Mercury HERE.

Kids in the same motels as crims – Sunday Telegraph

Sep 4, 2017

“Children are being removed from situations of risk every week across NSW and placed in completely unsuitable, insecure and potentially dangerous accommodation,” PSA Assistant General Secretary, Troy Wright told the Sunday Telegraph as the PSA launches the Safe Hands campaign.

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Join the Union Shopper Challenge!

Aug 31, 2017

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Big win for ADHC members in group homes and residential facilities

Aug 30, 2017

For more than eight months the PSA has been fighting to make sure all conditions of employment of  ADHC members are transferred with them when they leave the public sector.

After a decision by the Industrial Relations Commission today, we are happy to inform all ADHC staff covered by the Crown Employees (FACS) Residential Centre Support Services Staff Award and Crown Employees Ageing, Disability and Homecare NSW Department of FACS (Community Living) Award that the PSA has won the following conditions:

  • Salary Increase from 1 July 2017 and each year thereafter
  • Rostering principles
  • Special paid leave.

Congratulations to all ADHC Staff and a big thank you to our ADHC delegates who made statements as part of our case.

The first tranche of staff from Western NSW; Far West NSW and the Mid North Coast leave the public sector next week.

They will be sad to leave, but we hope will gain comfort from knowing their union has won to ensure they transfer with these conditions.

We will continue to be your union and to fight for your rights and entitlements.

Concerns over the privatisation of disability services – ABC TV

Aug 29, 2017

PSA Assistant General Secretary, Troy Wright underscores the PSA’s main concern with the privatisation of disability services: many will land heavily in the state’s hospitals, mental health facilities and even prisons, areas lacking expertise in specialist disability care.

Equality is union business

Aug 29, 2017


Inmates send jails to blazes – The Daily Telegraph

Aug 22, 2017

Prison Officers Vocational Branch Chair, Nicole Jess discusses the latest heated issue Correctional Officers are required to deal with in their workplace.

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Department cuts will see wild dog packs run rampant – The Coffs Coast Advocate

Aug 1, 2017

On World Ranger Day, the PSA unleashed the hounds about a restructure of National Park operations by the Office of Environment and Heritage that will see a further 15 area managers cut and large areas of the state exposed to wild dogs and bushfires.

“The Government’s assault on this workforce is nothing less than a direct attack on public safety,” PSA General Secretary Stewart Little said.

Read the full Coffs Coast Advocate article HERE.

Privatising Disability Services: Where to from here? Sunday 30 July 2017

Jul 31, 2017

One of the speakers at the NSW Labor State Conference PSA fringe event to discuss the Liberal Government’s privatisation of disability services was University of Sydney Associate Professor Damien Cahill.

You can read his speaking points HERE.

NDIS: Mother of daughter with severe disability fears privatisation of NSW group homes – ABC

Jul 28, 2017

The ABC’s Background Briefing has today profiled the torturous road to come for many with the privatisation of disability services in NSW.

The coverage marks the final day vital Community Support Teams (CSTs) will be part of Ageing Disability and Home Care.

From Monday, 31 July, CSTs transfer to the Benevolent Society and the State Government will no longer be responsible for this service.

Read the full ABC News article HERE.

Red Tape July – September 2017 edition

Jul 25, 2017

A new magazine format edition of Red Tape has just been launched.

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Juvenile jail staff put ‘in harm’s way’ – The Daily Advertiser

Jul 24, 2017

Juvenile Justice staff are “appallingly” ill-equipped to deal with their violent young charges says a former Centre boss.

Read the full The Daily Advertiser article HERE.

PSA petition to stop 40 Office of State Revenue jobs moving from Maitland to Gosford – Maitland Mercury

Jul 24, 2017

The PSA’s fight to stop 40 Office of State Revenue jobs moving from Maitland to Gosford has been taken up by the Maitland Mercury.

Red the full The Maitland Mercury article HERE.

National Park cuts let loose wild dogs and bushfires

Jul 19, 2017

PSA Media release

Large areas of the state will be left exposed to bushfires and uncontrolled wild dogs in the wake of a restructure of National Park operations by the Office of Environment & Heritage, the Public Service Association (PSA) says.

The restructure in the lead up to the bushfire season, when experienced planning should be in full swing, will also impact on the safety of the 30 million people who each year flock to the state’s National Parks.

“At a time when the wild dog population is peaking in the bush, Area Manager positions are being cut leaving farmers alone to deal with the issue and the potential for further significant stock losses,” said PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little.

Read the full media release HERE.

Wagga ‘juvy’ staff assaulted 27 times in 17 months – The Daily Advertiser

Jul 19, 2017

“The assault rate on our members has absolutely gone through the roof.”

The PSA’s Stewart Little and Julie Bond talk to the Wagga Daily Advertiser about the violence our members in Juvenile Justice face at work.

Read the full The Daily Advertiser article HERE.

Prisons Minister on 2GB – public sector have done a great job cleaning up Parklea

Jul 18, 2017

Ray Hadley on 2GB hammers Corrections Minister David Elliott over Parklea private prison following an inmate filming himself with drugs and weapons.

The Minister proudly talks up the great job the public sector has done in the wake of the video in tightening operations at the jail.


Listen to the full podcast below.

ICAC weakening due to budget cuts and job losses, union and NSW Labor warn – The Guardian

Jul 17, 2017

“Cuts to the ICAC are nothing more than the NSW government attempting to issue a get-out-of-jail-free card for itself and all its business mates,” PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little told The Guardian.

“The last thing this state needs is even less scrutiny of process involving the sale of critical [public] services but that is exactly what the state government wants.”

Read the full article The Guardian article HERE.

GEO jail scandal: Junee under scrutiny – The Daily Advertiser

Jul 12, 2017

After the Government was forced to intervene in the wake of an inmate at Parklea prison filming himself with a knife and drugs, the spotlight has turned to Junee jail which is also privately run by GEO.

“The only way we find out about these issues is by inmates filming themselves – what sort of system is that?” said PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little.

Read the full Daily Advertiser article HERE.

Park ‘veil of secrecy’ – Bega District News

Jul 11, 2017

Despite tourism increasing on the Far South Coast, National Parks and Wildlife are still making cutbacks.

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PSA General Secretary Stewart Little discusses prison privatisation – The Project

Jul 11, 2017

Prison privatisation has again been exposed as a disaster. PSA General Secretary Stewart Little explained why to the hosts of Channel 10’s The Project last night.

PSA fights for Central Coast domestic violence counselling service – NBN News

Jul 11, 2017

The PSA’s push to retain a vital domestic violence counselling service on the Central Coast in public hands made headlines on NBN TV.

Private prisons ‘breeding crime crisis’ – The Daily Telegraph

Jul 10, 2017

An “appalled” prisons commissioner is sending in an elite team to take over the privately-run Parklea Correctional Centre if necessary in the wake of the Youtube security scandal. Commissioner Peter Severin said this was the first time this action had been taken at any jail in NSW. A governor from the public section will lead the team and have the power to veto decisions. He said that when he met with bosses of the GEO Group, which runs the jail, this morning they were very apologetic.

“This is a very serious matter,” Commissioner Severin said. “I have just met with GEO and told them I am sending in a public sector governor to lead a review of the centre.

WEEKLY prison fight clubs and self-filmed vision of a prisoner showing off a knife and ice were proof private-run prisons were ‘breeding crime,’ a union claimed today.

Private prison operators have a history of security problems around the world including in New Zealand where prisoners held weekly fight clubs.

Serco, which is part of the consortium which has won the bid to run the new prison to be built outside Grafton, lost its contract to run a Mt Eden jail in Auckland after footage emerged of the gang-run clubs which encouraged some people to fight to the death.

As well as the weekend’s debacle where a maximum security inmate at Parklea Correctional Centre filmed himself with drugs and weapons on a mobile phone inside his cell, it shows that private companies should not be running the state’s jails, Public Service Association general secretary Stewart Little said today.

“The only way we find out about these issues is by inmates filming themselves – what sort of system is that?” Mr Little said.  “There is no transparency or accountability in private prisons.

“No private company should be profiting from crime. “These poorly managed, under resourced prisons are just incubators for worse problems that are later unleashed back into society.

“Society can’t afford to privatise prisons.”

He said that successful correctional facilities in Nowra, Cessnock, Kempsey and Wellington proved that if governments invested the money, they will get results.

Serco is one of the companies behind the Northern Pathways Consortium, which has been chosen by the Berejikilan Government to run a new privately operated Grafton prison.

Serco tried to block the release of the official report into the Mt Eden fiasco but was overruled by the New Zealand High Court.

It led to the government taking control of Mt Eden again.

Sydney’s Parklea jail is run by another private operator, GEO Group, which has still not commented.

The company is so secretive it will not reveal who its media spokesperson is but said they would “call back”.

The Daily Telegraph online is still waiting.

“We’re falling behind New Zealand here,” Mr Little said.

The GEO Group Australia as manager of Parklea Correctional Centre takes any security breach extremely seriously

We welcome the support of the Commissioner and Corrective Services NSW as we review our operations to ensure that the centre operates safely and securely.

Juvenile prison staff threaten to walk off the job amid assaults, radicalisation – The Sydney Morning Herald

Jul 3, 2017

Members in Juvenile Justice are taking a stand in their fight for measures to deal with violent and radicalised young offenders.

Read the full article HERE.

National Parks 50th triumph – The Land

Jun 27, 2017

The recent 50th year celebrations of the National Parks and Wildlife Service have been featured in The Land.

View the article HERE.

Centenary of the Petty Sessions Officers Association (PSOA)

Jun 27, 2017

I would like to warmly congratulate the Petty Sessions Officers Association (PSOA) on its centenary today.

In this day and age, it is a wonderful achievement for an employee organisation to reach such a milestone.

Formed and forged under oppressive circumstances, the Association continues to carry itself with a great sense of pride and tradition, values that all too often now seem to fall by the wayside.

I extend my personal admiration and that of the PSA to all those who have been involved in the Petty Sessions Officers Association over the last one hundred years.

Stewart Little
PSA General Secretary

Prison inmate remains on life support following alleged assault – The Sydney Morning Herald

Jun 26, 2017

A serious assault in the medium security John Morony Correctional Centre has highlighted the PSA’s concerns for the safety of staff and inmates if jobs are cut and the Centre becomes a maximum security facility.

Read the Sydney Morning Herald article HERE.

Park slash and Burn – Bega District News

Jun 23, 2017

A former employee of the National Parks and Wildlife Service has blown the whistle on critical job cuts in the region.

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PSA members win 2.5 per cent pay rise

Jun 22, 2017

The PSA this week secured a 2.5 per cent pay rise for all employees covered by the Crown Employees (Public Sector Salaries) Award and the Local Land Services Award.

The one-year increase, taking effect from 1 July 2017, came after 95 per cent of the more than 4000 PSA members who voted agreed to accept the 2.5 per cent agreement with the NSW Government.

The PSA went to the Industrial Relations Commission and finalised this pay rise for members across the public service. The rise comes with no trade off of conditions.

The 2.5 per cent pay rise is the maximum available under the Government’s wages policy, and sits above the 1.9 per cent wage price index. However, there have been a number of years when this cap has provided less than inflation wage rises.

The new PSA leadership is determined to provide members with greater certainty into the future and will push to have the productivity gains made by workers recognised in future pay rises, as well as longer term pay rises.

The PSA is attempting to update standalone awards for ADHC workers facing privatisation to enable their new privatised employers to recognise the current pay and conditions in new National System employment arrangements.

Last week, awards were made in similar terms for SASS Trustee, ICAC, IPART, Landcom and Audit Office.

While the pay rises will start in July, some agencies may require one or two pay periods to finalise increases and back pay.

These pay rises are won through the efforts of PSA members paying their membership dues and campaigning together. Stronger outcomes can be won with more members building a stronger union, so encourage your colleagues to join the PSA.

With this pay rise secured, the PSA will focus on filling vacant positions, improving access to flexible work conditions, improving job security, controlling workload and combatting privatisation.

Stewart Little
General Secretary

Young radicals have outgrown jail system – The Australian

Jun 22, 2017

The PSA again makes national headlines with its push for high security units in Juvenile Justice Centres to manage violent or radicalised young offenders.

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Berejiklian Madness as 500 Jobs cut from TAFE

Jun 21, 2017

PSA media release

More than 500 jobs from TAFE will be cut in the middle of a skills shortage under the latest act of Berejiklian madness, the Public Service Association says.

Also disappointing is the commitment to the safety of children at risk. Despite promising to increase child protection, the Government has failed to fill vacant Community Services case worker roles.

Despite having a $4 billion plus surplus, the NSW Government has jeopardised the future of NSW by attacking the prospects of the very worker bees required to drive the economy.

Read the full media release HERE.

Teenage inmates recruit radicals – The Weekend Australian

Jun 19, 2017

PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little hits the front page of the Weekend Australian calling for a specialist facility within Juvenile Justice to handle radicalised and violent young people.

“Radicalisation is not restricted to adults in the NSW prison system,” he said.

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Govt Dis-Connex – Budget must relieve disability care, child protection and prison crisis: PSA

Jun 19, 2017

PSA media release

The NSW Government must halt its socially destructive privatisation agenda and focus attention on such critical public services as disability care, child protection and prisons said the Public Service Association (PSA).

The PSA, the state’s largest public sector union, calls on the State Government to openly assess the socio-economic impact of any proposed privatisation as part of the budgetary process.

Read the full media release HERE.

NSW wipes its hands of disability services as Productivity Commission raises concerns – PSA

Jun 15, 2017

PSA Media release

The Public Service Association (PSA) has slammed the NSW Government for scrapping public disability services as a Productivity Commission report raises serious concerns about access and cost blow outs with the NDIS.

The report also highlighted the PSA’s long held concern that some people with disability are receiving a reduced service under the NDIS.

“The disaster this union has been warning about for some time is now official,” said PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little.

Read the full media release HERE.

Concern over transfer of 40 public service jobs from Maitland – NBN News

Jun 9, 2017

The PSA has gone to bat on NBN News for Office of State Revenue Staff who are being moved from Maitland to Gosford.

Wagga courthouse comes under fire for freezing working conditions – The Daily Advertiser

Jun 9, 2017

Staff and members of the public have been subjected to icy temperatures in Wagga courthouse. PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little turns up the heat in the Daily Advertiser in Wagga.

Read the full article HERE.

Maitland MP slams government decision to move jobs – The Newcastle Herald

Jun 8, 2017

The decision to move 40 Office of State Revenue jobs from Maitland to Gosford has been slammed by the PSA in the Newcastle Herald.

Read the full article HERE.

Female prisoner gets stuck in barbed wire at Silverwater jail – 7 News

Jun 5, 2017

POVB Chair Nicole Jess on 7 News about the incident at Silverwater.

Direction from POVB State Executive

Jun 1, 2017

The Management Committee, Prison Officers Vocational Branch of the Public Service Association of NSW directs members of the POVB not to perform any security checks in a sterile zone of any Correctional Facility that requires a staff member walking on loose and uneven ground.

An inspection of a sterile zone was conducted by SafeWork NSW.

The Inspector from SafeWork NSW identified that the stones, rocks or pebbles in the area were a risk to staff safety.

The Inspector further stated that if daily security checks needed be carried out, that task should be performed by mechanical means, ie; golf cart or similar.

If you are directed by any person to perform a walk through security check of a sterile zone, you are to inform the person making the direction that it is an unlawful direction and that you have been instructed by your union not to engage in the unsafe practice.

Contact a member of the State Executive immediately for assistance.

Office of State Revenue decision reversed by PSA media pressure

Jun 1, 2017

Following media pressure from the PSA, the Office of State Revenue (OSR) have reversed a decision that would have seen roles in the new Gosford office filled through natural attrition in the Lithgow and Maitland Collection Centres.

The plan was that as positions became vacant over the next 20 months, they would not be replaced at Lithgow and Maitland but instead be filled in Gosford.

The PSA had already expressed our concerns to management at the Peak Consultative Committee on 16 May around the loss of jobs from Lithgow and Maitland, and urged them to expand their presence in Lithgow and Maitland, rather than retract.

The PSA subsequently did an ABC Radio interview about the issue just before midday on Wednesday 31 May.

Then just before 4.30pm that day, Stephen Brady, Deputy Secretary, Office of State Revenue issued a statement to the media which reversed their planned move:

“We have listened to feedback from the community and staff members in the Office of State Revenue (OSR) about the Lithgow and Maitland Collection Centre positions moving to the new Gosford office through natural attrition.

Following consideration of this feedback, we have decided not to move the Collection Centre positions in Lithgow and Maitland to the new Gosford office through natural attrition. These positions will remain in their current locations.”

Your PSA delegates have worked particularly hard to place pressure upon management to reverse their original short-sighted decision.

This is not just a great win for members but a win for the communities of Lithgow and Maitland.

Furious CSI officers striking over unjust pay – The Sunday Telegraph

May 29, 2017

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PSA Annual Conference 2017 video part 2

May 26, 2017

Thank you to everyone who attended the successful 2017 Annual Conference.

PSA Annual Conference 2017 video part 1

Public prison announcement a win for public safety

May 25, 2017

PSA Media release:

The PSA is today celebrating its win in the fight to keep the NSW prison system in public hands.

Today’s announcement that the John Morony Correctional Centre at Windsor will remain a state run facility is a clear victory for common sense and recognition of the work and capacity of Correctional Officers said the union.

“That a Government hell bent on privatising everything has decided not to sell off the John Morony prison is an enormous win for public safety in NSW,” said PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little.

Read the full media release HERE.

PSA concerns about disability services sell off hits front page of The Australian

May 25, 2017

On the back his appearance on the Ray Hadley show yesterday, PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little expresses his serious concerns about the disability sell off in today’s Australian.

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Disability Services concerns on air – the next pink batts scandal?

May 24, 2017

PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little on Ray Hadley’s show today about serious concerns with transfer of disability services.


New video from the Workers Compensation Independent Review Office (WIRO)

May 19, 2017

The Workers Compensation Independent Review Office (WIRO) has issued a video for injured workers who may be affected by Section 39 of the Workers Compensation Act 1987 (Cessation of weekly payments after 5 years).

You can view the video HERE.

If you have any further questions you can ring the PSA on 1300 772 679 or WIRO on 13 94 76.

53 billion arguments against privatisation says PSA

May 16, 2017

PSA Media release:

According to new figures, the NSW Government has privatised a staggering $53 billion in public services to its business mates said the Public Service Association (PSA).

Critical services such as the Land Titles Registry and public disability services are among the areas that have gone under the hammer.

“The Premier says that the proceeds of the sale of these public services and assets will be channelled towards more rail, roads, schools and hospitals,” said PSA General Secretary, Stewart Little.

“What the Premier does not say is those roads will have a toll attached and the hospitals will be private.”

Read the full media release HERE.

NSW public schools to lose millions under Federal reforms – The Daily Telegraph

May 11, 2017

The Daily Telegraph has today reported that under schools reforms by the Federal Government, NSW public schools are set to be stripped of millions of dollars.

The Telegraph posted a full list of the schools and their funding.

You can view that list HERE.

Servo killer teens taunts – Sunday Telegraph

May 9, 2017

The PSA’s push to have violent young offenders housed in special high risk management units within Juvenile Justice is gaining ground.

PSA General Secretary Stewart Little speaks with the Sunday Telegraph.

Read the full article HERE.

Haste and poor care plans under NDIS a ticking social time bomb says PSA

May 4, 2017

PSA Media release:

Critical care plans under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) are poor and in such disarray, a peak body, National Disability Services have felt the need to release a report titled “How to get the NDIS on track,” says the Public Service Association (PSA).

“This report and the reasons behind its release goes to the heart of the PSA’s concern in NSW about the capacity of the NDIS to handle the full range of disability services provided by Ageing Disability and Home Care once ADHC has been removed from the picture,” said PSA Assistant General Secretary, Troy Wright.

Read the full media release HERE.

Protect our penalty rates

PSA General Secretary Stewart Little talks about why we must remain vigilant about protecting our penalty rates.

Recently the Fair Work Commission cut rates for hospitality and retail workers: and State Government minister have refused to rule out doing the same for NSW public servants.

And remember to sign our online petition to protect our penalty rates.


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