PSA pushes for genuine consultation before changes to the structure in Central Coast Community Services Centres - Public Service Association

PSA pushes for genuine consultation before changes to the structure in Central Coast Community Services Centres

The PSA has been advised that Central Coast Community Services is seeking to make some changes to the structure of how work is being managed within the Community Services Centres (CSCs). This will affect the Gosford and Wyong CSCs in particular.

We understand many members are concerned due to a lack of information being provided about the changes and how they will work in practice. At the same time there is support for changes to be made, as the current structure is causing excessive workloads.

The PSA has met briefly with the Department and requested that they provide some further information and an organisational chart. We have also requested further time to allow members and PSA staff to read through the information, ask questions for clarity and provide feedback so that it can be duly considered, and any suitable changes included.

We asked some initial questions that were provided by some members and have received the answers below.

1. Why were staff not consulted before the decision was made to roll out a new hub system?

As outlined in email and in broader communication to staff, we are consulting with staff on a proposal – a firm decision has not yet been made, and we are seeking staff input into the design and function of our child protection and permanency operations to make them better.

2. If staff can work from either location, will flexible working practices be encouraged and supported?

Yes – Hunter & Central Coast District is firmly supportive of flexible working practices.

3. How is the roll out going to take place on the ground level? How are staff going to change teams and hand over cases?

We want to talk this through with staff and involve teams in the process of deciding how transition should occur for their units and the families they’re working with.

4. How will the rotating of staff in hubs every set amount of time (for example, every 18 months) be managed?

We’re very open to suggestions around this, but in the main, rotation can be facilitated through conversations in supervision, annual Performance Development Plan conversations and as initiated by staff, in the same way that planned moves occur now.

5. Staff have been told they will be able to work from either the Gosford or Wyong office regardless of where the hub is based. How is this going to work logistically? How will accommodations, desks, interview rooms, etc. be managed?

In the same way that they do now, through the usual room and resource booking systems and collaboration between colleagues.

6. Please supply job descriptions or details of how each ‘role’ will operate for all positions available.

No changes to any current role descriptions or the range of duties for any role are proposed as part of this change. 

7. How will any attrition be managed if staff leave due to the proposed changes?

Attrition will be managed in the same way that it is now – we are hopeful that there will actually be less attrition as a result of the proposed changes, as what staff who are leaving now tell us is that they want streamlined systems that allow them to focus on quality work with families and for workload to be equitable and sustainable, and these things are the primary objectives of the proposal.

8. How will the EOI process work?

Again, we’re very open to suggestions and I would ideally like to discuss with delegates, but we are proposing a simple invitation to express a preference for each involved staff member, which we will do our best to accommodate. Many staff have told us that they are happy where they are, doing the work they are doing, so we’re not anticipating significant change, but believe that it’s important to take staff members’ preferences into consideration and provide the option of a change, if staff members would like to take it.

9. Are admin staff required to put in an EOI for different hubs, for their positions?

All staff working in Central Coast District Child Protection & Permanency operations, including our administration and support staff, will be invited to express their preference for the kind of work and location they would like to do.

10. Why have admin not been included in any of these discussions?

Service Support Managers (like all managers in the District) have been involved in the process of developing the proposal, and the broader group of administrative and support staff have been included in communications to all staff.

We have requested that the Department provide all information to affected staff and that meetings are held to allow questions to be asked, and feedback provided. Until meaningful and genuine consultation occurs, with all information provided, and reasonable time given to consider feedback, the PSA will seek that the changes are placed on hold.

The PSA supports members and their desire for changes to be made. Excessive workload affects you all directly and a reduction, a more efficient way of working, allowing you to have more meaningful time with your families and young people can only be a good thing.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please email PSA Staff for DCJ – Community Services at .

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