Recently, the PSA distributed a survey to members to gauge the level of insecure work arrangements in Housing, the Housing Contact Centre and Land and Housing Corporation.
YOU HAVE SPOKEN
Over 230 of you responded to our survey. Thank you for your responses, what you have told us about your workplace will inform our representations on your behalf.
- The overwhelming majority (75.21%) of respondents were women and nearly one fifth (20.17%) of you are on short term and temporary contracts
- This survey was able to confirm for us that, not surprisingly a relatively large number of respondents (23.38%) have been in temporary employment for over 4 – 5 years. The third highest level of respondents (16.88%) were employed on temporary contracts or insecure work for 6 – 7 years, a disturbingly high number
- At the time of the survey there are still a sizeable number of respondents (36.96%) who have been temporary employees for more than two years and almost half (41.18%) of you were previously employed on a temporary contract prior to being made ongoing
- Another cause for concern is the fact that an overwhelming majority (58.70%) of respondents reported that their contracts are renewed on a ‘three monthly’ basis. This raises many questions about the rationale used by the department to fill vacancies and adequately monitor workload and staffing levels and how this is reported in the yearly budget. This is borne out by the fact that while most respondents (43.48%) were afforded the certainty of written confirmation of their employment contract, worryingly (32.61%) are having their employment extended verbally. This is an unacceptable practice by any measure of common decency
THE VERDICT IS CLEAR
The results of the survey serve to reinforce what members have been telling us and what we have been hearing in workplaces more broadly, that insecure employment is a major problem for our members in Housing and Land & Housing Corporation.
We know that insecure employment is part of the systematic, ongoing coordinated effort to strip workers of their rights and entitlements which in the end will disproportionately affect the most vulnerable.
Over and over we heard you tell us that certainty in employment by way of permanent, ongoing employment was a priority for our members.
SO WHAT’S NEXT?
Thank you again for participating in the survey. The PSA your Union will continue to make representations on your behalf addressing issues around insecure employment practices across Housing and Land and Housing Corp to the government.
Also highlighting problems and inconsistency of temporary contract renewal practices across Districts, as well as the high use of agency contractors and lack of advertisement of ongoing roles and employment.
You can support the work of the PSA and your local delegates and keep the pressure up on this government by being in the union and ask and encourage your work colleagues to join as well. It’s time to change the rules. The union wants to scrap the GSE Act and believes employers have too much power.