Member Q&A – Introducing your new Christchurch PSAY Convenor Catherine Weusten
Each month we talk to a PSA Youth member and find out about their work and passions.
If you want to be involved in this feature let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org
Catherine Weusten, Collections Officer, Child Support, Inland Revenue
What were you initial thoughts on signing up to do this Q&A?
Awesome opportunity to introduce myself and give people a little insight into who I am!
What is your job and what do you do on an average day at work?
I work for Inland Revenue collecting overdue Child Support, my average day consists of locating and contacting liable parents who are in child support debt and negotiating payment arrangements with them. It’s pretty challenging work but so rewarding when a positive outcome is achieved. I take pride in knowing I am making a difference to those parents out there who need the extra support!
What was a highlight at work for you in the past month?
Being told by my manager that I do an amazing job! It’s so nice to be acknowledged for the work that you do and I am lucky to have a manager who understands the importance of this!
What would you say is the hardest thing about your job?
Attempting to negotiate repayments from liable parents who have avoided IRD for a long time. It requires many man hours to firstly locate them and initiate contact and then if negotiations are unsuccessful, locating a source of funds to tap into or even legal action e.g. seizure of assets. It’s really helped sharpen my negotiation skills and sometimes you feel like a bit of a Private Investigator!
What do you enjoy about being a part of PSA and PSA Youth, and what brought you to join?
I enjoy being part of a collective with like-minded individuals and being able to have an impact and voice on the issues presented to us. Everyone always is so welcoming, warm and friendly, It’s like a second family! Oh and all the PSA benefits such as cheap holiday homes, discounts for all sorts of things and the merchandise is pretty cool too!
What is your vision for young members of the PSA?
To be heard and represented well when it comes to the issues facing the youth of today such as precarious work and equal pay
How do you like to spend your time outside of work?
I love live music so you will usually find me at a gig in the weekends or down at the local with friends checking out new acts.
What cause would get you out on the streets protesting and why?
Equal pay, It’s disappointing that there is still a gender based wage gap in this day and age!
Which three figures from past or present would you invite to your place for dinner, and why?
My late Opa (Dutch for grandfather), I’d love to hear more stories from him about when he was a youth growing up in Nazi Occupied Holland (The Netherlands), Smuggling coffee up and down the Rhine in Tug boats, and about his service in Indonesia as an engineer for the Army.
Rys Darby. Aside from his side splitting comedy routines I’d love to pick his brain on how he got to where he is from being a student at Canterbury University and in the NZ army to being a world renowned comedian and what obstacles he had to overcome on his road to success.
Emmeline Pankhurst, British political activist and leader of the British Suffragette movement. I’d love to hear her story and what methods she used to stay so positive and keep the momentum going in the fight for womans rights to vote. Also it would be interesting to hear her veiws on Womans rights as they are this current day.
What are your three pet peeves?
Drivers who don't indicate, The noise people make when they rub their fingers on balloons and Finding a shoe and not finding its mate next to it
What advice would you give your 16 year old self?
Find your passion. Work smart towards being the best in your field. Use all of your talents to the best of your knowledge.