Baird Government ignores community message on NDIS - Public Service Association

Baird Government ignores community message on NDIS

Baird Government ignores community message on NDIS (PDF version)

On 22 March 2015, Premier Mike Baird announced the accelerated roll out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) to children aged under 18 in the Penrith and Blue Mountains area.

As usual, there was no prior consultation with any unions or the local community.

Following this announcement, the PSA held an urgent meeting of members in the Penrith Regional office. The meeting endorsed this resolution:

“This meeting of PSA members voices its shock and dismay at the lack of consultation and apparent planning behind Baird’s Sunday announcement that his government will roll out the NDIS early for the Nepean and Blue Mountains region.

“This meeting has no confidence in the Government’s ability to effectively roll out the NDIS as its privatisation of Disability Services will lead to a workforce and service delivery crisis in our region.”

On 20 April, PSA officials and a local Penrith/Blue Mountains delegate, in conjunction with the Nurses and Midwives Association, United Voice and Unions NSW met with senior managers from the Department of Family and Community Services (FACS) to raise their concerns.

In the NDIS trial area in the Hunter, PSA members, people with disability, their families and carers, have identified serious service-delivery gaps and major workforce-planning issues.

These issues have not been addressed by the Government.

In addition, it appears the majority of Ageing, Disability and Home Care (ADHC) clients who have received funding under the NDIS in the Hunter have chosen to stay with their current providers.

The Government announcement fails to mention their intention to use NDIS as a cover for the wholesale privatisation of disability-support services.

Their stated intention of providing “all necessary supports needed to live the life people want and achieve their goals and aspirations” is shallow when they continue to refuse to value the workers who provide these services.

The PSA continues to campaign vigorously against the unfair measures enacted in the NDIS Enabling Act.

The Act was introduced and pushed through State Parliament with no notice or consultation.

The key provisions of this Act include:

  • the transfer of staff to the private sector without their consent
  • stating this does not constitute a redundancy, retrenchment or termination of employment, so there is no entitlement to any redundancy or termination payment
  • no obligation on the new employer to specify an employment guarantee period for the “new” employee after forced transfer.

The transition package currently being offered to Home Care members is in stark contrast to those offered in previous privatisations.

Past packages included redundancies, three-year employment guarantees and transfer payments of 30 weeks.

PSA campaigning in the run up to the State Election put the issues of Defending Public Services to every sitting member and candidate.

PSA members doorknocked, ran market stalls, put up corflutes and billboards, rallied and took snap actions. There are now 50 re-elected or newly elected members of Parliament that are publically committed to opposing the privatisation of ADHC.

To continue the fight, our members in ADHC need the support of all PSA members.

If this privatisation is allowed to proceed a dangerous precedent will be set, putting all PSA members are in danger of being transferred to the private sector without consent.

Further there will be little or no compensation and no guarantees about wages and conditions or security of employment.

Get involved in the fight against privatisation in your local area

  • Ask your non-union colleagues to join the PSA and support the campaign to protect their jobs, rates of pay, conditions and entitlements. They can join HERE.
  • Print this bulletin and display it in your workplace.

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