Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . .

None . . Page.. 1087 ..

Mr Kaine: This is not Ellnor Dix.

MR HIRD: Yes, this is not Ellnor Dix over here.

MR SPEAKER: This is also not the yellow brick road. Can we get on with the question?

MR HIRD: Yes, sir. You are quite right, Mr Speaker. What is the Government's response to industrial action by staff at the Department of Public Administration over the devolution of certain corporate functions?

MR DE DOMENICO: I thank Mr Hird for his question. The Government considers that the industrial action is totally unnecessary, Mr Speaker. There are no jobs at stake; no-one is being disadvantaged. Services to agencies will be enhanced, in fact. Discussions with the union concerned are continuing, I am advised. For example, a meeting between senior officials of DPA and the union has been scheduled for tomorrow morning in an endeavour to address the remaining concerns.

Mr Speaker, the Government has decided that, as part of the review of the Department of Public Administration, and to coincide with changed administrative arrangements, certain corporate functions which have been carried out centrally will be devolved to each department from 1 July 1995. These functions comprise personnel and pay processing, occupational health and safety casework, occupational rehabilitation case management, records management and internal audit services. Returning these corporate functions to departments will enhance the departments’ ability to deliver a more effective and accountable service to the community by vesting in the chief executives full responsibility for decisions that affect the operations of their departments. These arrangements have been the subject of extensive consultation with affected unions, mainly the Community and Public Sector Union, and the departments. This consultation process began on 28 March 1995 when the CPSU was invited to commence discussions on the proposed devolution. Since that time many meetings have been held with the staff affected by the devolution, agencies and DPA management with a view to working through issues of concern.

Mr Speaker, despite this, the CPSU held stop-work meetings of its members today and resolved that it would commence industrial action in the form of work bans. These bans effectively mean that staff will not cooperate with the implementation of the devolution proposal and recently announced changed administrative arrangements affecting the Chief Minister's Department, Treasury and DPA. Mr Speaker, the Government understands that its staff do not oppose the proposal per se but still have a number of concerns that the Government needs to address. My suggestion to the CPSU is that, until those matters are addressed, they call off their strike immediately.

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . .