Page 1119 - Week 04 - Tuesday, 3 May 2022

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The motion is an affront to public servants in our territory. Ms Lee needs to stop the pretence that she is a moderate and instead admit that she is an acolyte of Zed’s right-wing conservatives. It is clear that Zed’s Canberra Liberals want to implement radical industrial relations policies that will harm Canberrans and deliver more insecure jobs. The ACT government will not support this stunt and instead will be supporting Ms Orr’s proposed amendment, which highlights the harm Zed has done to the public service and to our city.

MS ORR (Yerrabi) (4.00): I move:

Omit all text after ‘That this Assembly’ and substitute:

“(1) notes:

(a) the announcement made by the Labor Senator for the ACT, Katy Gallagher, on a genuine strategy to address the rapid increase in expenditure by the Morrison Government on the outsourcing of public service work to private consultants, contractors and labour hire firms, to do the work previously done more cost-effectively by public servants. The policy announced will rebuild capability, restore skills and improve job security back in the Australian Public Service after nearly a decade of cuts, privatisation and outsourcing;

(b) the Coalition have cut 5 000 jobs from the Australian Public Service in Canberra as part of their decentralisation agenda, harming the capability of APS agencies;

(c) the infamous and detrimental move of the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority from Canberra to Armidale by Barnaby Joyce in 2016;

(d) in the six years after coming to Government in 2013, the current Coalition Government cut more than 12 000 jobs from the Australian Public Service, driving away long term governance and policy expertise and increasing workloads for remaining public servants;

(e) Australian Public Servants have endured a decade of real wage cuts and arbitrary caps on wage increases through the current Coalition Government’s flawed and unfair approach to Enterprise Bargaining, and this has a flow on impact on the ACT economy;

(f) the COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the importance of a strong capable public sector to deliver outcomes for the community;

(g) that Senator Gallagher and the Australian Labor Party have a policy of real wage increases and genuine negotiations with union members and their representatives, this will benefit both Australian Public Servants and the ACT economy. Labor’s plan includes a strategic reinvestment of nearly $500 million as part of the first phase of rebuilding capability in the public service – including 1,080 new secure frontline service delivery jobs at Services Australia, the Department of Veterans’ Affairs and the National Disability Insurance Agency which will improve the delivery of services to Australians; and

(h) that the Australian Greens have a policy to revitalise the Australian Public Service by restoring the number of public service jobs to match 2012

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