PSA members in Community Services, Family and Community Services (FACS) Central and Corporate have voted to maintain current bans on employee participation in the FACS Performance Development Program.
The vote was conducted in response to a series of recommendations made by the Industrial Relations Commission of NSW on 1 September, including a recommendation the PSA lift participation bans on the agency’s Performance Development Program. For a further detailed summary of the IRC’s recommendations click HERE.
Following a 1 September conciliation conference before the IRC, the Association resolved to ballot members on whether or not lift the PDP ban in light of the Commission’s explicit recommendation.
While time constraints were a factor in voter turnout, 440 members took the opportunity to vote, with more than 70 percent voting to maintain the current ban.
The PSA has now written to FACS to advise the ban will remain in place. As such:
All PSA members are advised that the Performance Development Program (PDP) is the subject of an industrial ban and members are directed not to participate in the E-Learning, or take part in any Performance Development Program planning or implementation until FACS agrees to undertake meaningful consultation and provide the detail requested.
The ban applies to employees working in Community Services, FACS Central and Corporate only.
For further information contact your workplace delegate or FACSOrganising@psa.asn.au.
Your union, the PSA, has long opposed the introduction of the Department of Family and Community Services (FACS) Performance Development Program (PDP) into Community Services.
The PDP is currently the subject of a PSA ban for members in Community Services, and members from FACS central and corporate staff.
In the face of our ongoing opposition, FACS finally initiated dispute proceedings in the Industrial Relations Commission of NSW (IRC), where a compulsory conference was held on 1 September 2016.
At the IRC, the PSA won a recommendation that no employee should be required to take part in PDP without first having a capability-based role description.
The IRC also urged the parties to:
- engage in further discussion around staff training needs, with the department agreeing to provide face-to-face training to staff where specifically requested by business units
- consult to develop policy and procedures for managing unsatisfactory performance.
IRC recommendation regarding PDP Ban
However, in conjunction with the above the IRC recommended that the PSA lift our ban on implementing the PDP for employees with capability-based role descriptions, while noting the department’s commitment to transition all employees to capability based role descriptions for by February 2017. The IRC indicated that should the PSA persist with work bans, it was likely that binding orders would be made against your union, which could mean that we forfeit the more favourable recommendations.
On balance this is a favourable outcome, and the recommendations address many of the concerns that led to the implementation of the ban. However, it is the view of the PSA and the Community Services Departmental Committee that FACS has failed to commit sufficient resources, education and training to employees in supervisory and non-supervisory roles for the fair and effective implementation of PDP, which must be addressed if the PDP is to be introduced.
Have your say:
The PSA is seeking member feedback before making a decision on lifting our ban.
PSA members in Community Services and members from FACS central and corporate staff are asked to go HERE and vote on whether to lift the current ban on PDP.
Please note that the ballot closes 6pm, Tuesday 13 September.
PSA keeps up the pressure on out of home care privatisation
Read the PSA’s media release from 9 September on the need for private sector regulation HERE.
The Fair Work Commission approved the Enterprise Agreement late on Monday 8 August 2016. This means the Agreement will come into force and will operate from 15 August. It also means the 2016 pay rise of 2.5 percent will now be passed on, and backdated to 1 July.
TAFE NSW should update all members shortly on when exactly the back-pay will be provided.
There are many key changes in this three-year Agreement. The PSA has been rolling out “learn your Agreement” sessions for members to gain a better understanding about what changes are in place. The most significant change will occur in six months’ time, when most employees will move to the single classification structure.
The move to a single classification system is never an easy task. Members have appeal rights that must be used in the first nine months if you don’t agree your position translates to the proposed TAFE Level.
The single best improvement for members in the new classification system is improved job design. As TAFE faces more and more cuts to courses and teaching hours, jobs can be redesigned more broadly to allow more full-time and full-year positions.
Another key improvement is the move to 35- hour week for all employees, with no loss of weekly income and no loss to Rostered Days Off. This is an excellent outcome, where TAFE NSW is ahead of the NSW Public Service, and ahead of most Australian universities.
For full details about your new Agreement, please keep an eye out for future updates, and for local lunchtime meetings to go through your new Agreement in detail. More updates will be coming out over the next few weeks about specific aspects of the new Agreement in more detail.
You can find the approved Agreement HERE.
To help your Union stay strong and to continue our fight for improved job security for TAFE NSW employees, ask your colleagues to JOIN the PSA online now. For every new member you help sign up you can receive a $75 gift card. See HERE for more details.
The PSA secured a major win for SLSO members in the Industrial Relations Commission on 1 August 2016.
Read the bulletin HERE.
The results of the staff ballot for your new enterprise agreement have been announced with 84% of staff voting Yes.
This Yes vote puts an end to over 12 months of negotiation, which have seen a number of back downs from TAFE’s original proposal rejected by the union and staff in November 2015. This includes:
- Hours of work. TAFE’s original proposal had 80% of staff increasing their weekly hours to 37, for no extra pay. This was then revised to 36.25, before the PSA (CPSU) secured a 35 hour week for all staff. Current 38 hour a week staff will move to 35 hours from January 2017, without a reduction in their weekly wage, and the ability to continue receiving their RDOs.
- Automatic transition to contemporary classification structure. TAFE’s original proposal had staff transitioning to the new classification structure via “restructure”, resulting in 100s of extra restructures throughout TAFE. The PSA (CPSU) secured automatic transition in January of 2017.
- Salary maintenance. Throughout bargaining, TAFE consistently refused to maintain the salary of staff who faced a pay cut in the transition to the new classification structure. This meant that staff faced real cuts to their wages in excess of thousands of dollars. The PSA (CPSU) was able to force TAFE to agree to “red circle” or “maintain the salary” of anyone whose position transfers over at a lower rate.
- An immediate 2.5% pay rise for all staff, followed by a further 2 years of 2.5% pay rises for the majority of staff. In addition, staff moving to a higher pay rate in the new classification structure will have their salary increased in January 2017, as well as any applicable increments every 12 months thereafter.
- Broken shifts. TAFE wanted to extend broken shifts from the current long standing restrictions (available only for security officers) to all staff.
- Permanent Part Year Employment (PPYE). TAFE’s original proposal allowed for an unrestricted number of permanent part year positions, potentially allowing TAFE to convert current full year positions to part year positions via restructure. The PSA (CPSU) won a restriction to the current amount of staff (650) working part year. Part Year Employment will also be limited to certain circumstances where ‘there is genuinely no work across the whole year’. This will be closely monitored at each Institute by the PSA (CPSU) and at the Peak Consultative Committee. The PSA (CPSU) will also closely monitor the use of part year employment to ensure TAFE does not go above the 650 and can justify each PPYE position.
The PSA (CPSU) have forced TAFE to move a long way from their original terrible proposal.
TAFE’s back down only came once members took the dramatic but necessary decision to take Protected Industrial Action. It is only through standing strong together, that these wins were secured.
There are changes in the enterprise agreement, particularly around PPYE and Flexible Working Hours, which will need to be closely monitored by the PSA (CPSU) to ensure that they are implemented in the correct manner.
This is why being a part of strong union is so important, because without the PSA (CPSU) fighting for members, TAFE will try to get way with whatever they can.
Whilst every single member is congratulated on the solidarity displayed to ensure TAFE backed away from their original proposal, special congratulations are due to your Bargaining Team for the dedication they have displayed in standing up for the rights of fellow members.
The negotiations were particularly gruelling and exhaustive, and delegates are required to undertake this work in addition to their normal jobs.
Your Bargaining team is listed below.
Leon Parissi – Sydney
Brook Down – North Coast
Brad Cowie – Illawarra
Christopher Hobbins – Riverina
Glenda Pryor – Western Sydney
Blake Stephens – PSA
Phoebe Dangerfield – PSA
The enterprise agreement will now be signed by the parties and lodged with the Fair Work Commission as soon as possible, with the first 2.5% salary increase payable from 1 July 2016.
The PSA (CPSU) will soon be commencing a number of enterprise agreement information sessions in order to answer any questions staff may have about the implementation of the new agreement. Details will be distributed next month about these sessions.
What can you do?
Speak to non-members about joining the PSA (CPSU). Whilst your union negotiates on behalf of its members, all staff benefit from the PSA (CPSU) negotiating the conditions within your enterprise agreement.
Encourage and assist a colleague to join your union, and we’ll say a collective thanks by giving you a $75 gift card!
Yet more reason to be Proud to be PSA.
Red Tape article (Jan – April 2016)
The Court of Appeal last year handed down a very important decision in favour of the PSA and all injured workers in NSW.
For the last two years, the PSA has been fighting to have an injured Correctional Officer returned to his previous employment under Section 240 and 241 of the Workers Compensation Act 1987.
This member was injured undertaking his duties and as a consequence was medically dismissed and subsequently received a payout.
The injured Correctional Officer eventually recovered and wished to be reinstated to his previous employment. The PSA took his case to the Industrial Relations Commission where the Commissioner found in favour of our member. The employer then appealed this decision to the Full Bench of the Industrial Relations Commission, which overturned the original ruling.
The PSA then decided to appeal this ruling of the Full Bench to the Court of Appeal.
Your union made the decision to appeal as the matter had implications for all our members and because it fitted within its broader strategy of leading the fight against the unfair aspects of the workers compensation legislation.
On December 4 2015, the Court of Appeal set aside the ruling of the Full Bench and court costs were awarded to the PSA.
The only avenue of appeal now within the court system is to the High Court.