All the latest news and views from the CPSU team
Our week in review
NW fire shock
Reporter Sean Ford writes: “The service now had just one full-time firefighter for the entire region, stretching from the Narawntapu National Park to Marrawah and the West Coast, and seasonal firefighters were recently let go with no guarantee of work next summer, a person close to the situation said”.
Read more here.
AHP industrial action escalates
ALLIED HEALTH Professionals are the backbone of our health system and last week they ramped up their industrial action. AHPs, who are the second largest professional group in our health system include: Pharmacists, Radiographers, Medical Scientists, Psychologists Physiologists, Orthotists, Dieticians and many more vital positions.
Last week even Health Minister Michael Ferguson said: “Allied health professionals are an essential part of the Tasmanian Health Service and the Government values their work” – but he still refuses to meet them or give them representation at the highest level of the Tasmanian Health Service.
So last week AHPs voted to up the ante on their industrial action, voting to implement a range of actions including:
•Ceasing accreditation activities;
•Ceasing collection costs for consumables;
•Ceasing accreditation activities;
•Changing their email signature to the AHP dispute signature;
•Wearing a blue AHP sticker and more.
Tasmanian Health Service CEO Dr David Alcorn and Minister Ferguson must stop ignoring Allied Health Professionals and act immediately.
Child Protection: win for CP staff
This good news comes after a long, hard campaign to raise the issues of chronic under-funding and under-staffing including many letters to the Minister and action outside her office.
The Minister says an extra 31 staff will be added and there’ll be an injection of $20 million in funding with the first $12 million used to redesign the system, including: – $3.6 million to refocus CP Intake into an Advice & Referral Service that will provide “early access and integrated support to vulnerable children and their families”. – $8.5 million to establish Child Safety Teams and move away from the single case worker model.
The Child Safety Teams will be introduced over the next two years and will include Senior Practice Consultants, Support Workers and Unit Coordinators with Psychologists providing direct support for staff dealing with the pressures of responding to the needs of children.
There’ll also be E-learning and staff development resources for the teams. The Implementation Plan will be released in coming weeks and we look forward to seeing more detail about the redesign and the boost in staff and funding.
In an email to unions the department says that once the Implementation Plan is released in full it will “begin a process of significant consultation with your organisations, staff, and other key stakeholders”.
Consultation is good, but it’s a shame the Implementation Plan was drafted without CP staff input.
PSUWA Meetings & your Log of Claims
We’ve held meetings in the North, North-West and South over the past fortnight with Members who help deliver a range of services that Tasmanians rely on. It was great to meet and talk to you about your agreement and answer your questions. Votes are now rolling in via email.
PSUWA survey: the results are in!
Some of the key themes identified in the survey results were:
Funding, Resources, Workload “There aren’t enough people anymore to do the same work. I love my work but my health is suffering as I try to do the work of more than one person.” “Our Public Sector can’t be further depleted of staff to deliver services.” “We need to stop cutting back staff to the bone and expecting same service level from remaining staff.”
Fair wages and superannuation “We need a fair wage that we can live on, that allows us to give our children a good education and so we can look after our family’s health.” “We need fair pay increases that represent the increased costs of living.”
Career paths, training and development “The current vacancy control system has operated for far too long and is preventing career progression and job movement. It’s also reduced the number of new staff entering the public service, particularly young people who want to start a career in their home state.” “Job security is a big issue. We don’t want to hear any more political spin about “no forced redundancies” when this clearly isn’t the case.”
Politicisation of the Public Sector “The culture of a professional, accountable and independent public service is being diluted by politically aligned, partisan appointments in the most senior ranks of the executive service by people whose expertise and credentials do not match the requirements for the roles.”