PSA meets with our Asia-Pacific public sector union friends

Recently returned from the Asia Pacific Regional Conference of Public Services International (PSI) in Japan, PSA national secretary Glenn Barclay says the conference made clear that tax avoidance was having a big impact globally on public service funding.

PSA Executive Board member Gail Arthur with national secretary Glenn Barclay

PSA Executive Board member Gail Arthur with national secretary Glenn Barclay.

“While I know that we face issues of tax avoidance by multinationals, the primary thing [is] that our government, like others, are dealing in austerity. They are starving public service of proper funding and they’re unwilling to charge appropriate taxes”.

While Barclay presented on the issue of taxation and the impacts it is having on the New Zealand public service, the main theme of the conference was disaster risk reduction and management. Barclay says the PSA is at the planning stage in this area. This means ensuring there are decent terms and conditions, recruitment retention and good health and safety to help drive the management of crisis and natural disaster response from the public service.

Also attending the conference were the new PSA president Janet Quigley, Gail Arthur from the executive board, and PSA organiser Nick Kelly, who is a regional youth delegate for PSI and is helping to build a youth network.

The women’s caucus, which Janet and Gail attended, focused on achieving equality through adequate funding for quality public serves, increasing women’s representation and mentoring in leadership roles, ending violence and discrimination against women and economic empowerment in the changing world of work.

New Zealand will host a PSI Oceania meeting in 2017 to continue these discussions.

By Ta’ase Vaoga