|The PSA was recently advised by PSA delegates that NSW NPWS staff who undertake firefighting and emergency services work were not eligible for COVID-19 vaccination under Phase 1b (which is not consistent with other emergency service workers in other public sector agencies access to vaccinations).
On that basis, PSA industrial staff reviewed all documentation provided and made representations to the Head of NPWS, Atticus Fleming. He was reminded that this is a matter that affects the Health and Safety of all NPWS staff, and requested that he take immediate action to rectify the situation.
The PSA is pleased to advise members that this error has been rectified and that NPWS fire fighters and those involved in providing emergency services can now have priority vaccinations under Phase 1b. For further information, please discuss with your immediate workplace supervisor.
Vacant roles and underspends in the Labour Expense Cap (LEC) in Branches
The PSA has recently been advised that some Branches (in spite of a number of ongoing roles remaining vacant) are yet to spend their LEC for this financial year. The PSA has been advocating since the outcomes of the 2018 Future National Parks restructure that all vacant roles were fully funded and as such should be filled.
This was by agreement reached in the Industrial Relations Commission. Since 2018 the PSA has been vigorously advocating for ALL ongoing roles to be filled. Given underspends in LEC, the PSA now questions the NPWS willingness to honour this agreement and find the desire to fill these ongoing roles.
Given the workload stress being felt by all PSA members in the workplace, we will continue to advocate for the filling of vacant ongoing roles. We have (once again) sought a meeting with NPWS Senior Management to discuss this issue.
On a brighter note, an additional 83 temporary roles are coming on line through a range of new projects. These comprise 21 Rangers, 32 Project Officers, 6 Technical Officer roles and a number of Project Support Officers (Grade 3/4 Clerks). This comes after the PSA has forcefully advocated for a significant increase in such roles to support all new projects. Further to this, the PSA will continue to advocate that these roles become ongoing.