PSA News – 24 March 2017

Mar 24, 2017

PSA Annual Conference and Country Conference 2017

The PSA Annual Conference will be held on Thursday 25 and Friday 26 May 2017 at PSA House, Level 10, 160 Clarence Street, Sydney.

Country Conference will be held on Wednesday 24 May also at PSA House commencing at 2.00pm.

Nomination forms are available on the PSA website.

Please ensure nomination forms are completed in full and email addresses printed clearly on the form.

Papers will be forwarded by email as they become available.

Nominations close 5pm, Friday 21 April 2017.

Land and Property Information BBQ and rally

The PSA is supporting a demonstration on Tuesday 28 March called by the Concerned Titles Group to protest the privatisation of Land and Property Information (LPI).

The PSA will be joined by the following institutions:

  • The Concerned Titles Group
  • The Law Society of NSW
  • The Institution of Surveyors NSW
  • The Real Estate Institute of NSW

The PSA will be holding a BBQ from 12:00pm on the day outside the LPI Building, Queen’s Square, before marching to the top of Martin Place (near Parliament House) at approximately 12:40pm.

The PSA encourages all members working in the CBD to join us for a BBQ lunch before rallying to let Premier Berejiklian know our public services are not for sale.

Protect our penalty rates

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

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

Remember to sign our online petition HERE to protect our penalty rates.

PSA staff vacancies – Regional Organisers – Lismore and Bathurst

Dec 22, 2016

EOI – Regional Organiser positions – Lismore and Bathurst (PDF version)

The PSA currently has vacancies for two Regional Organisers, one based at Lismore and one based at Bathurst.

Click HERE to read the position descriptions.

The closing date for applications is 5pm Friday, 27 January 2017.


Workers compensation rally

Nov 2, 2016

Friday 4 November

12.30pm – 1.30pm

Martin Place, Sydney – near Macquarie Street

While some elements of the savage workers compensation reforms by the NSW Government in 2012 have been wound back thanks, in part, to the PSA, plenty of harsh obstacles remain for injured workers and their families.

Provisions for staff in Corrective Services, who have to contend with the most dangerous workplaces in the country, remain totally inadequate as are the measures to protect members in Juvenile Justice and others involved in emergency situations such as firefighting.

The PSA made a submission to the review of the laws by the Law & Justice Committee of the NSW Legislative Council.

That paper formed part of a larger submission by Unions NSW.

On Friday 4 November at 12.30pm please join me at the Unions NSW rally at Martin Place, Sydney, near Macquarie Street and help highlight the importance of a fair and equitable workers compensation system.

Stewart Little
General Secretary

Email to all members – 31 October 2016

Oct 31, 2016

Dear members,

On Friday 28 October, I commenced duties as the new General Secretary of the PSA.

I would like to thank all those who supported me over the last few years and everyone who worked so tirelessly during the PSA election on behalf of myself and my leadership team.

I extend my warm congratulations to new Assistant General Secretary, Troy Wright and new President, Kylie McKelvie along with Senior Vice President, Nicole Jess and Vice Presidents, Wendy Hurry and Ray Wilton.

I welcome also the new members of the PSA’s Central Council.

In my duties over the next four years I will be drawing on my experiences at the former Metal Workers Union, Parliament House – where I was a PSA delegate – and the number of years I served as a Senior Industrial Officer at the PSA.

I wish to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of many staff at the Association, however, the last four years saw a number missed opportunities for the union.

The introduction of the GSE Act should have been vigorously opposed rather than virtually waved through.

Likewise, a new Regulation under the GSE Act which strips redundancy rights from employees involved in privatisations.

With my recent experience as a carer with ADHC, I will be ensuring that the PSA combats the privatisation of disability services with a fresh campaign.

It was the new Assistant General Secretary, former Probation and Parole member, Troy Wright who earlier this year as CPSU Industrial Officer lead the successful court case that won the PSA the right to follow Home Care workers into the private sector. We intend to pursue a similar strategy for other members who may otherwise be lost through privatisation or outsourcing.

The new President, Kylie McKelvie and Senior Vice President, Nicole Jess will similarly use their personal experience working in Corrective Services to reinvigorate our fight on behalf of those members.

I also intend for the union to step up its efforts in a range of other areas including the fight for proper leave provisions for those impacted by domestic violence.

I am committed to restoring the status of Women’s Council in recognition of the specific challenges our female membership face, and ensuring our members in regional and rural NSW receive locally-based industrial support.

To undertake these tasks effectively, my leadership team will reboot the business of the PSA to act on the concerns of delegates as outlined in the election campaign.

This will involve reshaping and realigning the internal structure of the PSA which will be undertaken in full and open consultation with staff and the respective unions.

We will also make the most of our most valuable resource: delegates.

I want PSA members to be proud of their union, to know that the PSA is their insurance policy in the workplace.

Most of all, I want to the PSA to retake its rightful position as one of the key unions in NSW.

To that end, please join my team and I in making your union a real force to be reckoned with once again.

Stewart Little
General Secretary

PSA News – 4 August 2016

Aug 4, 2016

Worker safety is for all PSA tells Inquiry, not just Emergency Services

The PSA has completed a submission on behalf of members to the NSW Legislative Assembly’s Committee on Law and Justice.

The Inquiry, launched in May 2016, is investigating  Violence against Emergency Service personnel in NSW.

The PSA has made it clear the issue is much wider.

As PSA General Secretary, Anne Gardiner, said on this issue as far back as July 2014, “As communities are getting less tolerant in general, our public servants are being placed at more risk.” [Daily Telegraph, 5 August 2014]

Using the vast experience of delegates and PSA staff, the PSA’s submission highlights the many and varied roles carried out by PSA members and the risks they face on a daily basis while performing their duties on behalf of the community.

You can read the full submission HERE.

Unions NSW ‘Return to Work Inquiry’

The PSA has been working tirelessly to roll-back unfair changes to workers compensation laws made by the NSW Government in 2012.

As part of our campaign, the PSA will be making a submission to the forthcoming review of these laws by the Law & Justice Committee of the NSW Legislative Council (Upper House), highlighting those issues of most concern to our members and their families.

Unions NSW will also be making a submission, focussing on the experiences of injured workers returning to work. Unions NSW is currently collecting stories to include in their submission, both through their website HERE and by visiting 10 locations around the state in August 2016 to speak to workers face-to-face.

You can see the hearing dates and locations HERE or register your interest in telling your story in person HERE.

PSA News – 20 July 2016

Jul 20, 2016

SPSF CPSU election result

On 30 May, members were advised that there would be two union elections this year in which all members are entitled to vote.

The first of these elections was the SPSF (NSW Branch) of the CPSU.

The result of this ballot is as follows:

Branch Secretary: Anne Gardiner

Branch Assistant Secretaries: Steve Turner and Kirsten Cameron

Branch President: Mary Court

Branch Vice Presidents: Jenny Singleton, Nicole Jess and Rebecca Reilly

Branch Councillors: Heather Shields, Sage Benishay, Shane Elliott, Matte Rochford, Kellie Bottrell, Jeff Walters, Angela Field, Michelle Bogatyrov, Shelley Odewahn, Julie Westacott.

Ballot papers for the second election, which is the main PSA election, will be sent on Monday 12 September 2016.

Voting in your union’s election is very important as it promotes democracy and accountability in the union.

PSA Annual Women’s Conference 2016

Women’s Conference will be held on Tuesday, and Wednesday, 13 and 14 September 2016 at PSA House, 160 Clarence Street, Sydney.

The theme for this year’s Conference is  ‘Connecting the Generations’.

Any female PSA member can nominate to attend Conference.

Preference will be given to those who have not previously attended.

Women’s Conference is an opportunity to meet fellow members.

If your application is successful, the PSA will apply to your department for two days special union leave for you to attend.

To register for Women’s Conference click HERE.

Registrations close 15 August 2016

March to Mike’s Office

More than 100 ADHC members took the fight to defend public services from privatisation direct to the Premier on 18 July.

Members met at the Ferry Wharf in Manly and then marched to Mike Baird’s office.

The on-line article in the Daily Telegraph about the rally quoted PSA Assistant General Secretary, Steve Turner extensively about the PSA’s concerns for ADHC clients and thousands of staff after the privatisation comes into effect.

Steve Turner said ADHC was being sold off despite being the largest single provider of high level disability services and that people with disabilities will have their choice of provider removed once ADHC is dismantled.

He called on the Premier to ensure ADHC remains as a real choice for people with disabilities, their families and carers in NSW.

The PSA also wants the Baird Government to act on the 25,000-signature petition against the privatisation of ADHC that was submitted to Parliament in November 2014.

The PSA would like to thank the CFMEU, NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association, the MUA, RTBU, USU, and Unions NSW for their support in the march to Mike Baird’s office.

You can view the Daily Telegraph article about the rally HERE.

(Note: Some members may be unable to view the article due to subscription issues)

Billboards highlight the danger for Correctional Officers

The PSA has launched two billboards to alert the people of NSW about the importance of a public run prison system and the risks staff face.

The billboards are located at:

* M4 Parramatta inbound

* Dubbo South (Wongarbon) Mitchell Highway

You can view the billboard HERE.

View The Sunday Telegraph article HERE.

PSA submission to Inquiry into the NSW child protection system

The PSA has welcomed a move by the NSW Legislative Council (Upper House) to establish an inquiry into the NSW child protection system.

PSA Assistant General Secretary Steve Turner began the push for the inquiry back in mid-2015 after a number of tragic incidents.

The PSA, in consultation with members from Community Services, prepared a detailed submission for the inquiry, which you can read HERE.

Thanks to Community Services DC delegates for their work on the submission.

According to a Legislative Council media release, the inquiry will “look at the role of the Department of Family and Community Services (FACS) and non-government organisations in protecting children and young people at risk of harm” and consider the:

  • adequacy of funding to employ specialist caseworkers and other frontline personnel, as well as funding for prevention and early intervention
  • efficacy of the tools used to assess risk of harm reports
  • training and monitoring of foster carers
  • oversight by the Office of the Children’s Guardian
  • initiatives to protect indigenous children.

Build A Better Future campaign thank you

Thanks to the volunteers who hit the phones and participated in other activities around the Build a Better Future campaign which urged voters to think about how the Federal election would affect public services in Australia.

In total, across Australia, volunteers had 46,102 conversations with union members and persuaded 33,191 to “Put the Liberals Last” to protect Medicare, penalty rates, jobs and job security, education funding, and our public services.

PSA defeats Government’s attempt to abuse process

The PSA has recently had another win in the Industrial Relations Commission (IRC).

Every three years all awards are reviewed by the IRC to ensure they are up to date.

This is an administrative process designed to ensure that references to Acts are updated and salaries tables kept current.

Historically, all parties have respected the unique nature of this process and not used it to push partisan agendas.

Unfortunately, the NSW Government has been insisting the IRC insert a No Extra Claims clause in each award against the wishes of the unions.

The PSA, along with Unions NSW, resisted their demand at the formal hearing in January 2016.

We’re happy to inform members that on 24 June 2016, the IRC reaffirmed the integrity of the process and denied the Government’s attempt to corrupt it.

This is an example of how the PSA continues to protect members’ interests.

The pitfalls and black holes of privatisation in The Sydney Morning Herald

Once again, Ross Gittins in The Sydney Morning Herald nails the argument against the privatisation of public services.

Read the Sydney Morning Herald article HERE.


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