Last week, the PSA met with Justice to discuss the investigation into Victims Services. The following issues were raised with the department on behalf of members:
- A significant number of people dropped off when Justice decided to move to a questionnaire format rather than an initial interview. The PSA asked that these individuals be contacted with the opportunity to re-engage in the process. Justice’s response was that they would pass that request onto the people conducting the investigation. Justice also stated that the purpose of the questionnaire was to categorise issues under investigation under specific areas, such as bullying and workplace culture.
- The PSA stated that staff on leave in December and January should be contacted so that they can still participate in the investigation. The PSA said that, if necessary, the investigation should take a bit longer to accommodate for staff coming back from leave so that the investigation is thorough. Justice took both points on board.
- The PSA stated that individual participants should receive an individual response to their concerns. Justice responded by stating that will depend on what the results of the investigation are. If there are broad themes, the response to be individuals may be generic.
- The PSA asked about the timeline of investigation. Justice responded that it won’t be concluded until the new year. Janet Wagstaff will remain the Acting Commissioner in the meantime.
- The PSA expressed the membership’s view that all participants should have the opportunity to be interviewed. However, justice stated that this might not happen due to volume of participants.
- The PSA conveyed that some Victims Services staff are still too afraid to participate in the investigation for fear of repercussions. In response Justice assured the PSA that being involved in the investigation would not engender negative consequences for individuals participating in the investigation. If anything arises in this regard, members can contact Reece Collin, HR Director for the Justice Services Division. You can also contact the PSA.
- If you would like the PSA to forward a response to the investigation to Justice, we can forward it anonymously.
- The PSA also expressed concern over the lack of consultation over the restructure last year. The PSA will be perusing this issue in the new year.
At the end of the meeting Justice committed to keeping staff up to date with the progress of the investigation.
Going forward, the PSA and Victims Services will recommence regular Joint Consultative Committee meetings. This forum will provide a formal process for workplace issues to be raised on behalf of members.
Your PSA staff are:
What can you do?
- Encourage your colleagues to join the PSA online at: https://membership.psa.asn.au/register
- Give a copy of this bulletin to your colleagues.
- Print this bulletin and put it up on your notice board.
- Get involved as a PSA Delegate or Contact: get in touch with your Organiser.
United we Bargain, Divided we Beg – a unionised workplace is a fairer one!