Your PSA delegates and Industrial staff have met this week to discuss feedback they have received from members and the information provided by CSNSW regarding the current restructure so far.
The most pressing issue currently is the industrial implications pursuant to the proposal to reassign 20 per cent of the Service and Programs Officers (SAPO) roles and a smaller number of Psychologists roles from the gaols to Community Corrections offices.
The PSA has written to CSNSW advising that it is imperative that a further meeting between the PSA and CSNSW occur and an extension to the consultation timeframe is necessary.
In our correspondence we raised the following issues:
- The PSA strongly disputes that the movement of SAPO’s from a custodial setting to a community setting would result in no changes to the role description. The PSA is therefore seeking an updated Role Description to be consulted on and provided for the proposed SAPO roles located in Communities before the end of the Consultation period.
- Questions remain about hours of work, flex time, work on weekends, and the Environmental Allowance. The response from CSNSW previously given was that these issues would be explored at a Workshop to be held on 30 May 2023. This workshop is scheduled for after the current consultation period and after the Expressions of Interest for the Community SAPO roles are open. Under this proposed timeline it is not possible for meaningful consultation to occur and members who apply via EOI will be at a significant disadvantage not having the complete information required to make an informed decision surrounding their futures.
- In regard to the Environmental Allowance, CSNSW has indicated that those who were previously receiving this allowance would continue to receive it for a further 3 months following any move to a Community based SAPO role. The PSA considers this to be inadequate. Staff who were engaged as SAPOS had a legitimate expectation that this allowance would be ongoing, as it was never envisaged the role would be outside the custodial setting. The PSA therefore seeks that anyone currently receiving the Environmental Allowance continue to do so regardless of whether they are a SAPO in a Custodial setting or a Community setting.
- The PSA is concerned that removing SAPOs from the Correctional Centre will create extra work for members who remain in the custodial setting. As well as SAPO members being concerned about this scenario, members in other parts of the non-custodial membership, such as Case Management, are concerned that additional work will be left for them to complete.
Due to these unresolved issues, the PSA has sought an extension to the consultation period until the issues raised above are addressed in full.
Members will be provided with a further update as soon as CSNSW provides the PSA with a response.