PSA Congress 2016


On September 20-21, more than 150 PSA delegates from across the country gathered in Wellington for two days of discussion, debate and decision making.

Congress, held every two years, is the highest decision making body of the PSA.

This year, Congress was held at the national museum, Te Papa Tongarewa.

Opening congress

PSA president Mike Tana opened Congress for the first time with a speech outlining some of the PSA's achievements during his two terms as our union's leader. [ read the speech online ] [ watch the video ]

This Congress was Mike's last occasion as PSA's president, and he chaired both days, including the process of electing his successor.

A new president

Incoming PSA president Janet Quigley

Incoming PSA president Janet Quigley

Delegates elected a new president to lead the PSA. Janet Quigley, a health promoter at Community and Public Health in Timaru, was elected for a two-year term to replace Mike Tana, who had served two terms.

“Stand Together highlights the real work our members do in their communities, and will tell voters how valuable the work of public servants is to making New Zealand a great place to live," she said.

“I’m thrilled to have won, and I’m looking forward to the challenges ahead.”

Launching Stand Together

Stand Together is our campaign for quality public and community services, and our members who work hard to deliver them.

At Congress, our national secretaries Erin Polaczuk and Glenn Barclay gave a keynote address as our public launch of the campaign. [ read the speech online ] [ watch the video ]

For the launch, we were joined by several MPs: the minister for state services, Hon. Paula Bennett; the Labour Party spokesperson for state services, Kris Fa'afoi; the Labour Party spokesperson for industrial relations, Iain Lees-Galloway; and Green Party MP Kevin Hague.

Stand Together will be the campaign that takes us through to the 2017 General Election, highlights the issues we care about, and ensures that the changes we want to see are on the agenda of political parties and the wider public.

Congress also held four workshops on key themes of Stand Together: Equal pay; privatisation; mental health; and building Māori activism. Following the workshop, a panel discussion was held to share the ideas and plans that came from each workshop. [ watch the video ]

PSA Congress 20162016 annual and financial reports

Congress recieved presentations on the 2016 annual report (from Mike Tana, PSA president) and the 2016 financial report (from Andy Colwell, PSA treasurer). [ view the presentations ]

Following the presentations, Congress voted to formally receive both reports.

Changes to our rules

Also at Congress, delegates voted to require all governance bodies of the PSA to match the percentage of women in the structures they represent, as a step towards addressing the gender imbalance in some of our leadership structures.

Our youth network had a remit passed which means that the Executive Board will make a plan for youth representatives on each of our sector committees and on the Board itself.

And we now have a fifth formal network, with our Deaf and Disabled Members' Network being given official status alongside our existing networks for youth, women, Pasefika, and rainbow members.

Keynote from a familiar face in a new role

Richard Wagstaff, the president of the NZ Council of Trade Unions, gave a keynote address, focusing on the role of unions and the importance of freedom of association in our society. [ read the speech online ] [ watch the video ]

Richard is very familiar to PSA members, having previously been one of the PSA's national secretaries from 1999 - 2015.

Congress 2016