Finance, Services and Innovation bulletin – FWH Agreement – 14 Sept 2015

Bulletin to Finance & Services re FWH Agreement – 14 Sept 2015 (PDF version)

As members will be aware, the Acting Chief Executive of DFSI wrote to the PSA in July indicating an intention to introduce a single flex agreement across the entire Department.

Most of the existing flex agreements have been negotiated under the provisions of Clause 10, Local Arrangements, of the Crown Employees (Public Services Conditions of Employment) Review Award 2009, which contains a clause allowing either party to terminate the arrangement by giving 12 months notice.

The Department has advised that after this time the Crown Employees Conditions Award would apply if agreement was not reached.

The notification the PSA received constitutes the required 12 months notice, and effectively means we have until 1 July, 2016 to negotiate a new agreement with the Department. The Department has committed to meet its obligation to negotiate during the next 10 months.

The PSA takes the view that the next 10 months will be an excellent opportunity to organise and build collective power around the issue of flexi-time and to test how we implement a broad bargaining agenda when negotiating for industrial instruments other than awards and enterprise agreements.

The PSA conducted its first subcommittee meeting earlier this month where we looked at the various flex agreements across the new department structure, and discussed, what we believe, is the most effective union strategy for maintaining, and, where possible, enhancing the existing conditions in the various agreements in order to reach the most favourable single flex agreement for members.

Members should be aware the Wages Policy Taskforce has been tasked by the Department with applying FWH parameters for the single agreement, which will, among other things:

  • exclude banking of accrued FWH credits
  • prioritise “operational requirements and service delivery” over the existing bandwidth
  • limit settlement periods
  • limit the carry forward of accumulated FWH credits.

These are but some of the attacks on FWH conditions the WPT is hoping to implement.

Consultation and engagement with affected members is integral to the success of our bargaining strategy and we are now calling on members who have a solid knowledge of their FWA to step up and contribute to the development of the bargaining strategy.

The subcommittee consultation meetings occur monthly at PSA House. Local arrangements can be made with management for your release.

If you would like to be involved in this issue please get in contact with either:

PSA industrial advocate: Matthew Drake-Brockman or PSA organiser: Merv Christensen

Delegates: Cassandra Coleman/Garth Nolan/Kathy Maltby/Alan White