You will be aware of the recent announcement from the RFS that gave the positive news of increased funding in State Mitigation and transitions to permanency for State Mitigation staff. In the same message it made reference to many existing roles within the RFS being converted to the OpO program.
As a response to this announcement the PSA fired off a list of questions and sought to meet as soon as possible to clarify significant points of interest.
RFS Management indicated they were too busy to meet with the PSA as they wer focusing on moving the State Mitigation staff transition to permanency:
- In terms of queries from the PSA about changes to State Mitigation employee role descriptions “The role descriptions issued with these offers of employment have been updated to reflect current branding and terminology, but have not undergone significant amendment at this time.”
- In terms of concerns regarding changes to positions as it relates to the OpO program, “It is anticipated that these changes will be developed and implemented over the next 12 months. Of course, as is our usual practice, consultation with the PSA will be take place where appropriate, through the relevant forums.”
In regard to State Mitigation the PSA is pleased on the increased funding and that our long term temporary employees in this area will finally be made permanent and members would be aware that the PSA has argued for this over many years.
We note, though, that being made permanent is subject to medical and fitness and conduct and performance standards being met.
Members who are not transitioned to a permanent role should contact the PSA for advice.
We remain concerned regarding whether the RFS will engage in proper consultation with the PSA about changes as referred to in dot point 2.
The PSA and the RFS have not always been in agreement in relation to whether appropriate consultation has taken place on matters over the years. The recent communication from RFS doesn’t convince the PSA that change isn’t forthcoming in the near future nor does the phrase “will be developed and implemented” give the PSA confidence that the pending consultation will discuss whether or not the change will be made.
The PSA will be writing formally to the RFS to further insist on either an urgent meeting or a total commitment to consultation prior to any decision to seek or implement such change.
Members should urgently make the PSA aware of any changes to Operational Officer pathways (i.e. the movement of other positions to the OpO program).