Corrective Services Remembrance Day

Nov 24, 2017

Today, Friday 24 November, we reflect, as we do each year, on the sad loss of colleagues in Corrective Services who have tragically fallen while serving the community.

The day is therefore a reminder that Correctional Officers and supporting staff are employed in one of the most difficult and dangerous workplaces in the community.

Every Correctional Officer should be able to go to work each day and know that they will return to their families and loved ones safely.

Sadly, in this line of work, that’s never a guarantee.

No other workplace requires the riot squad to be on stand-by when a smoking ban is introduced.

No other workplace requires such stringent safety procedures.

Many of the inmates that Correctional Officers and staff supervise have nothing left to lose and all too often officers are required to deal with unpredictable and dangerous situations.

This underscores the importance of proper staff to inmate ratios and the need for improved workers compensation provisions to protect these officers and their families.

The world that exists behind the walls of Correctional facilities might seem intriguing to some members of the community.

The fact is these officers place their lives on the line every day in service to the public.

Stewart Little
PSA General Secretary

 

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.

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.

PSA members win 2.5 per cent pay rise

Jun 22, 2017

Dear members,

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.

 

Yours sincerely,

Stewart Little
General Secretary

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.

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