PSA News – 15 July 2015

Jul 15, 2015

40% pay rise while 2.5% forced on NSW public servants

While PSA members are grudgingly handed a 2.5 percent pay increase, the Baird Government is a little looser with the purse strings when it comes to the senior public service.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Mike Baird issued a “Premier’s direction” to the Statutory and Other Offices Remuneration Tribunal to award a reported increase of almost 40 percent for the new head of the Barangaroo Delivery Authority and 24 percent extra for the new Secretary of the Treasury.

The Government’s argument that offering a low salary might not attract the best candidates is exactly what the PSA has been saying since the 2.5 percent wage policy was introduced.

“Clearly however, the Government feels it is more important to pay management whatever is necessary in order to get the best candidates while restricting by law the salary increases of those who actually deliver services to millions of NSW residents each day,’ said Acting Public Service Association General Secretary, Steve Turner.

Read the PSA’s media release response HERE

Lend your voice to the NSW Parliamentary Inquiry into TAFE

The PSA wants the voices of members heard at the upcoming Parliamentary Inquiry into Vocational Education and Training in NSW.

Members are encouraged to contribute to the PSA’s submission HERE

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/inquiryTAFE

Written submissions

The PSA also encourages members, their friends and family to make their own submissions to the Inquiry.

While all submissions are subject to Parliamentary Privilege, which protects against civil or criminal liability for statements made, submissions can be made anonymously.

Details of how you can make your own submission to the Inquiry can be found HERE

Submissions close on Friday, 14 August 2015.

Submissions should address the terms of reference (pdf), but the Committee is especially interested in hearing your personal experiences of TAFE and vocational training.

Tell the Inquiry about your positive experience of TAFE or perhaps a negative experience with a private provider.

Public hearings

As well as written submissions, the Parliamentary Committee will also be holding public hearings in Sydney and some regional locations.

The PSA will be pushing for the committee to hold hearings across as many locations as possible, especially in rural and regional NSW.

You can assist in getting your voice heard by also making this request as part of your written submission.

Information on workers comp

The Injured Workers Support Network is holding a forum on workers compensation on 23 July between 5:30pm and 7:30pm at the Churches of Christ Hall, 31 MacMahon Street, Hurstville.

More information is available HERE

Be careful what you sign up for…

PSA members should keep in mind: your union can only guarantee confidentiality of your personal information for its own surveys or petitions.

The PSA has no control over information provided as part of surveys and petitions organised by other bodies such as Unions NSW and the ACTU.

PSA News – 25 June 2015

Jun 25, 2015

Workers compensation survey

Members are encouraged to participate in the workers compensation survey currently being undertaken by WorkCover NSW.

Participants are asked to share their opinions about the customer service they received from their insurer and WorkCover, their interactions with medical providers, the quality of the information they received about their rights and obligations, their overall satisfaction with the claims process and what they think can be done better.

The results of the survey will contribute to the future direction of the scheme and its operations.

Members can complete the survey anonymously HERE

The survey closes on 3 July.

Tax statements

The PSA 2014-2015 tax statements will be posted to members by mid July 2015.

We know this is important to members and are currently focusing on the preparation.

Your patience is appreciated.

New private jails shocking waste of money

The PSA has issued a media release condemning the Baird Government’s plan to waste billions of dollars on building new private jails when an existing government run facility at Grafton sits virtually empty.

PSA General Secretary Anne Gardiner said the Government announcement about private gaol beds is not about solving the long-standing overcrowding problem in prisons.

Read the media release HERE (pdf)

Annual Conference 2015 presentations

Professor Ray Markey gave two presentations to delegates at the PSA’s Annual Conference 2015.

One was on union participation in climate change.

View that presentation HERE (pdf)

The second looked at workers’ compensation.

View that presentation click HERE (pdf)

PSA News – 15 May 2015

May 15, 2015

Invitation to Parliamentary Forum on workers compensation

Greens MP David Shoebridge is holding a Parliamentary Forum to discuss workers compensation in NSW, in particular the damaging impact of the 2012 “reforms” and what can and should be done to restore decency to the scheme.

PSA General Secretary, Anne Gardiner will be among the speakers.

When: Monday 18 May 2015, 2.00pm

Where: Theatrette, NSW Parliament, Macquarie Street, Sydney

Who: Injured workers, Parliamentary representatives, legal and medical professionals

You can view a flyer for the event HERE

Performance management

On 6 May, the PSA sent letters to all Department Heads seeking consultation and information on the implementation of the performance management systems in their agencies and other government sector areas within their scope of control.

The PSA will soon be conducting listenings to gather the views of members on how performance management should operate.

Proposed changes to the GSE Regulation and Rules affecting Senior Executives & Equivalents

On 8 May, the PSA received a letter from the Public Service Commissioner seeking comment on proposed amendments to the Government Sector Employment Regulation and the Government Sector Employment Rules.

You can read the letter HERE

You can read the Draft Regulation HERE

You can read the Draft Rules HERE

The proposed changes deal mainly with issues around the transitional arrangements for the establishment of the new Senior Executive structure.

As a result, these issues are of most concern to PSA members who are currently:

  • Senior Executive Service; or
  • Senior Officers; or
  • Senior Officer Equivalents.

The Association wants to hear from members in relation to these proposals.

Feedback is required by no later than 20 May 2015.

Comments should be sent to research@psa.asn.au

The PSA submission in relation to these matters needs to be finalised and with the Commission by Friday, 22 May 2015.

Recognition for Prison Officers

For some time now NSW Prison Officers and the PSA have been pushing for due recognition of the work done by members in the state’s prisons.

On 27 March, the Premier received a letter from the Prime Minister stating that he supported the establishment of an Australian Corrections Medal to recognise meritorious service by Correctional Services personnel.

You can read a copy of that letter HERE

Last week, the PSA provided background to the Telegraph about the work done by Prison Officers.

A story appeared in the Telegraph on 12 May and Steve McMahon, Chair of the POVB, has been undertaking a number of media interviews arising from the story.

Government Employee Number

All NSW Government sector employees will soon receive their own unique Government Employee Number (GEN).

GENs will be stored in the NSW Identity Hub, a whole-of-public-sector system managed by the Office of Finance and Services.

The employee number will be retained, even if a worker transfers between agencies, leaves the NSW Government sector or returns at a later date.

The Public Service Commission (PSC) worked with public sector unions, including the PSA, and the NSW Privacy Commissioner to come up with a code of practice to protect workers’ personal details.

The PSA will closely monitor the situation to ensure agencies comply with the Privacy Code of Practice and that no other information about members is collected by agencies.

Information on GENs, including privacy provisions, the code of practice and frequently-asked questions can be found on the PSC website HERE

PSA leads fight for changes to workers comp

The PSA has made a submission to the Minister for Finance proposing a number of changes to workers compensation legislation.

You can read that submission HERE

Nepal Earthquake Appeal

With over 4,000 people confirmed dead, and over a million children said to be ‘severely affected’, Nepal needs our help.

Nepali unions are organising urgent assistance and are calling for global union support.

Union Aid Abroad-APHEDA will work with the General Federation of Nepalese Trade Unions (GEFONT) and Union Network Nepal Liaison Council (UNI NLC) to provide the following support:

  • Medical treatment
  • Temporary tent and housing
  • Water and food supply

Every contribution counts in the effort to rebuild the lives of people in Nepal.

DONATE HERE

PSA News – 20 April 2015

Apr 20, 2015

Annual Conference 2015

The PSA’s 2015 Annual Conference will be held on Thursday 28 May and Friday 29 May.

All members are invited to nominate to attend conference.

First time attendees are particularly encouraged to apply.

Successful applicants can apply for Special Leave to attend.

Conference sessions include:

  • Challenges facing Australian unions – Professor David Peetz
  • Workers Compensation & unions and climate change – Professor Ray Markey
  • Protecting union rights under conservative governments; the way forward – Rita Mallia CFMEU NSW Construction Division President
  • Campaigning against privatisation – Q&A panel with PSA delegates
  • How to build our strength post the NSW election – summit style workshop
  • PSA Crown Employees wages strategy for 2016

On the Thursday night there will be a social gathering at PSA House with food, drink and a screening of the movie ‘Pride’.

Nominations for Annual Conference close at COB Friday 24 April.

For details click HERE.

Follow us on Facebook

and Twitter @psansw #psaconf2015

First Kirkconnell, now Grafton

PSA campaign to reopen Grafton gaol

Following our success in having Kirkconnell gaol near Bathurst reopened, on Thursday, 23 April 2015 at 11am, the PSA will be holding a media conference at the front of Grafton Gaol to publically call on the Baird Government to fully recommission the prison to alleviate the overcrowding crisis in NSW correctional facilities and provide much needed employment in the area.

The PSA has raised concerns with the Government that overcrowding is heightening the risk of violence in the state’s gaols while workers compensation for Correctional Officers and other members is woefully inadequate.

PSA General Secretary, Anne Gardiner and POVB Chair, Steve McMahon will be joined by a former Correctional Officer from Grafton and representatives of the Grafton Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Draft Transfer, Secondment and Temporary Assignment Guidelines

The PSA received a copy of the draft Transfer, Secondment and Temporary Assignment Guidelines from the Public Service Commission on 8 April 2015.

The Guidelines provide policy information on mobility under the Government Sector Employment Act 2013 section 64 and section 66 and Part 6 of the Government Sector Employment Rules 2014.

The Association is currently preparing a response which is to be submitted to the Commission by 22 May 2015.

Members wishing to provide comment or feedback on the draft Guidelines should send an email to research@psa.asn.au no later than 4 May 2015.

To view a copy of the Guidelines click HERE

Psychometric testing

The PSA has written to the Public Service Commissioner expressing concerns about the adoption of psychometric testing by the Commission as a recruitment tool in the public sector.

PSA General Secretary, Anne Gardiner requested a written response from the Commission on a range of concerns.

Read the letter HERE.

May Day 2015

May Day celebrations will be held in Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong.

In Sydney, members are encouraged to join in the May Day march and assemble on Sunday 3 May at Town Hall Square at 11.00am.

In Newcastle, it’s on Saturday 2 May. Assemble at the corner of Donald and Beaumont Streets, Hamilton at 10am for a 10:30am march to Gregson Park.

In Wollongong, assemble at 10.00am on Saturday 2 May at Lowden Square.

Capability Framework and Performance Development Framework

Apr 17, 2015

Capability Framework and Performance Development Framework bulletin – 17 April 2015 (PDF version)

PSA members covered under the Government Sector Employment Act (2013) and School and Administrative Support Staff may be aware that Section 67(1) of the Government Sector Employment Act 2013 requires that the head of a government sector agency develop and implement a performance management system with respect to employees of the agency.

Compliance is mandatory. The current deadline for implementation is 1 July 2015.

The PSA will be seeking to negotiate with the Public Service Commission (PSC) about extending the deadline of July 2015
for implementing performance management systems.

As part of our negotiations with the PSC, the PSA wrote to the Public Service Commissioner in January 2015, asking for a report about which NSW public sector agencies have adopted the frameworks.

You can read a copy of that letter HERE.

The PSA is currently writing to NSW public sector agencies with a series of questions about the implementation of the framework, and will request written responses.

Industrial staff will also be asking these questions at the next round of Joint Consultative Committee (JCC) meetings.

The responses that agencies provide will help to inform the PSA’s position paper to be sent to the Public Service Commission.

The Capability Framework creates a foundation document for your agency to undertake all workforce planning processes, including creating role descriptions to replace “position descriptions” or “statements of duties”.

The PSA has been consulting with delegates in agencies and has concluded that various agencies are at different stages of implementing both the Capability Framework and the Performance Development Framework.

Of particular concern to the PSA is the fact that the PSC has mandated performance management systems in agencies without all agencies having role descriptions in place.

The Capability Framework based role descriptions have to be introduced by 9 August 2016.

The PSA sees it as an anomaly that performance management systems are due to commence in NSW public sector agencies by July 2015 without agencies adequately describing the roles that its employees are expected to fulfil.

Further information will be provided. Members who wish to provide feedback on the above can email research@psa.asn.au or raise any issues with your PSA delegate.

2.5 per cent win in major pay case

Apr 9, 2015

On 8 April, the President of the Industrial Relations Commission agreed to make the Public Sector Salaries 2015 Award.

A 2.5% increase under that award is effective from the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2015.

The award will expire on 30 June 2016.

It was the first time since 2008 that an award application for the increase was made by consent of both the PSA and the Government.

This increase has been agreed to without trading away any existing conditions.

The PSA surveyed affected members to seek their view on the 2.5% offer under the banner of Your Pay Your Say.

More than 95% of respondents voted YES to accept the 2.5% increase.

The PSA now has 12 months to plan our future wages strategy.

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