The CPSU has repeatedly written to the Rockliff Government asking for a deferral on its plan to abolish the Department of Communities Tasmania. Members across the department raised dozens of questions and concerns about the impact of the change, many of which have gone unanswered. The Government has deemed that its obligations to consult with workers simply do not apply in this case. It claims it was, “a government decision and therefore not subject to consultation”.
Neither the Tasmanian community nor workers directly impacted by the change have had the opportunity to understand why DCT is being abolished or what objectives the Government hopes this will achieve. Let alone being given the opportunity to have impact heard and taken into account, the cornerstone of any change process undertaken in good faith.
DCT itself is required to consult with each affected group prior to transfer:
- A change proposal was developed for Sport & Recreation prior to transfer on 1 July.
- Consultation is also due to commence with the Board of Exceptional Needs and the Family Violence Counselling Support Service this week, ahead of transfer on 1 August.
- A change proposal has also been developed for the Office of Aboriginal Affairs, Family Safety Secretariat, Child & Youth Wellbeing Strategy, Policy and Programs, Community & Disability Services and Grants who are also due to transfer on 1 August.
- Further change proposals will be needed for the more than twenty units due to transfer on 1 October.
The CPSU has developed a detailed summary of the change timeline, including units scheduled to be transferred between now and October. We also address concerns for workers covered by the Health & Human Services Award (HAHSA) who will see their award potentially change. We argue that there should be ‘no disadvantage’ for workers and outline two proposals that would protect affected workers’ conditions. Discussions with the Department on how to resolve these issues are ongoing.
Members can provide feedback on change proposals directly or they can raise their concerns through the CPSU and we can provide feedback on their behalf. Either way, we need to hear from you because the Transition Team are telling us ‘everyone is happy’. With 88.6% of members against the change, we know that is not the case, so if you have questions, concerns or feedback email Tom Lynch at firstname.lastname@example.org.