FACS JCC meeting held on 1 September 2017 - Public Service Association

FACS JCC meeting held on 1 September 2017

Report back on JCC meeting – FACS Illawarra Shoalhaven members – Sept. 2017 (PDF Version)

On Friday, 1 September the Family and Community Services Illawarra Shoalhaven and Southern District Joint Consultative Committee meeting was held by teleconference.


PSA representatives and delegates: Tony Heathwood (PSA Regional Organiser), Katie Shipp, Robyn Hay, Jasna Market-Simpson

Management representatives: District Director Jill Herberte, Cathy Croker (HR) and others

Summary of matters raised

Flex agreement

The PSA raised concerns of restrictive actions by certain managers around access to and approval of flex hours and leave that appear to be in breach of both the spirit and intent of the flex agreement

The District Director responded she believed management actions were valid and based on business need, work availability and task completion.

Outcome: As the matter was being raised at the state peak JCC in Sydney no action would be taken until the District was informed by the state JCC outcomes.

The PSA recommends all members continue to access their flex entitlements (as per the agreement) and members should email if they encounter problems with their flex.

Temporary assignments

The PSA raised concerns about certain staff being placed in higher graded roles for up to 12 months. Whilst permitted under the GSE, the PSA seeks equitable access to development opportunities for all FACS employees such opportunities should be filled through an EOI process.

FACS responded that these processes were being reviewed centrally in order to provide some consistency, simplification or processes and further information would follow this process.

Outcome: The District is awaiting further advice from FACS Corporate about the filling of higher graded roles. The PSA suggests staff should seek to actively participate in the PDP process, identify development opportunities and seek appropriate training.

Staff concerned about lack of opportunities to act in longer term higher graded roles should contact South East Regional Organiser at .

Recoup of salary overpayments

The PSA raised concerns that some members have reported to have been subject to recoup of overpayments without notice or notification.

Outcome: FACS has agreed to provide a copy of the FACS Salary Under and Overpayments Policy and Procedures.

If you have been overpaid please check with the policy and procedure to ensure that the appropriate guidelines are being followed.

Members subject to this policy who may be placed in financial distress due to a repayment should immediately contact Member Support on
1300 772 679

Performance Development Program

The PSA raised concerns of members about a lack of sense of any professional development and inconsistent  implementation across the district. The response was that process is due to commence again and cited some staff are reluctant to participate due to PSA bans (that have now been lifted).

Outcome: Members who wish to enhance their career development are encouraged to participate in the PDP process and to ensure that the appropriate training and development opportunities are provided by FACS. Members should familiarise themselves with the online tools and conversation guidelines for the PDP process to ensure that management are using the PDP process appropriately.

Staff retention

The PSA raised concerns that a number of CSCs were experiencing workload issues associated with loss of substantial number of case workers and sough information from the district about staff retention strategies. The district is to provide PSA with the top five reasons for resignation provided by staff who complete an exit survey. FACS is actively pursuing a social media campaign to attract staff.

Outcome: Members are reminded of the standing ban on performing work or duties of staff who have resigned or not been replaced whilst on leave.

Follow-up to Respectful Workplace training

PSA members requested information on the district response to the outcomes of the Respectful Workplace training that followed the last staff survey.

Outcome: The district advised there has another survey in May 2017 and it was awaiting the results.

Coniston CSC Review

Outcome: The district advised the report was still with the office of the Senior Practitioner and not information was available at this time

District process for approval of leave

The PSA raised concerns about inconsistencies, lack of fairness or transparency between different offices in relation to approvals for leave, particularly over the Christmas New Year period.

Outcome: The district reported that arrangements of the Christmas New Year period were to ensure adequate service delivery and should not affect leave at other times of the year.

It was agreed staff are entitled to submit applications for leave and to have that application deal with in a timely manner to allow the staff member to plan. It is not appropriate for managers to unreasonably delay approvals for leave.

Members having difficulties with leave approvals should contact their delegate or the PSA on 1300 772 679 to seek advice.

Further detail or information on these issues can be obtained by emailing the Regional Organiser on .



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