PSAY Newsletter

Get the latest on tax, the mental health inquiry, workplace issues and congress, all from a youth perspective.

Welcome to the latest issue of the PSA Youth newsletter! Get the latest on tax, the mental health inquiry, workplace issues and congress, all from a youth perspective.

In this issue:

  • Tax working group
  • PSAY events
  • Mental health and addiction inquiry
  • Wellness and Safety Committee at LINZ
  • Congress 2018 - why is it important?
  • Youth Leadership Training
  • Public Service International
  • Member Q&A - Stephanie Poole

Tax Working Group (with Dany Miller)


We became interested in Dany’s work from a feature in a very cool article, on The Spinoff website. Below she talks about the purpose of the tax working group and why youth should be interested.

What is the purpose of the tax working group?

The tax working group is about shaping the future of our revenue system in New Zealand it’s about improving the fairness of the way we administer taxation. Some of the key areas being looked at are the future of tax, the purpose of taxes in New Zealand, the role of taxation in affordable housing and what are we taxing - are they the right things?! (This is a hot topic at the moment and includes the discussion around multinationals and capital gains which feature prevalently in the media).

Why should youth be interested in it?

Everyone should be interested in this discussion because the decisions made by this group will have a palpable effect on all of our lives. Everyone pays tax! So, everyone has a role to play in ensuring that the system best represents the wants and needs of the users it serves. We all have a shared stake in this dialogue and rangatahi – especially those in the public sector- have a special responsibility to ensure the youth voice is heard around the table.


HELP PSA Quiz night - coming up in June, it’s going to be a wicked event with lots of fun and trivia. We recommend that the Welly PSAY members put a team together and have a blast of a time – Enjoy! 

Here is the Facebook Event. But for those of you not on FB:

Where: PSA House, 11 Aurora Terrace, Wellington

When: 6pm – 8pm Wednesday 20 June

Register with friends in teams of 4-8, or individually to be placed within a team on the night. There will be a cash bar, raffle and prizes. Tickets are $15 with proceeds going to Wellington HELP - providing support to survivors of sexual and abuse and their whanau.

Purchase tickets on the night or pre-purchase via online banking - RSVP to

Past events

Hamilton PSAY function (25 May 2018) – hasn’t happened yet, maybe ask Liam to write this bit on Monday! (I had a chat to Liam who said he could do a quick write up on Monday, considering his event’s on tonight), I’ll follow up with himJ

Pink Shirt Day (18th May 2018) - Speak up. Stand together. Stop bullying.

Pink Shirt Day is about New Zealanders Speaking up and Standing together to Stop bullying in all aspects of life. It has been celebrated in New Zealand since 2009 and the campaign continues to grow as people become more and more aware of the toxic effects of bullying.

Check out the website here where you can find out more information about the movement, fundraising and even helpful resources; including the Pink Shirt Day compliment maker.

Show us how you celebrated Pink Shirt Day by posting a picture of you, your family and/or co-workers on our Facebook Page

Pink Shirt day

Mental Health and Addiction Inquiry (MHA)

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The Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction was set up by the New Zealand Government in response to widespread concern about mental health and addiction services in the mental health sector and the wider community.

The window for making a submission to the Inquiry officially closes in early June, and we have an opportunity as a network to add weight to this by bringing together views from across the network.

In order to accomplish this together as a network, we have sent members personalised surveys to complete (survey sent on 23/05/18). All of the questions are optional and the closing date is Thursday 31 May.

PSA campaigned hard for an inquiry into mental health care, before the 2017 election – we are both service users and providers and we’re in DHBs, the community sector, the state sector, local government and the public service. This is your opportunity and your chance to express your views on this very sensitive topic, please take advantage of it.

Wellness and Safety Committee at LINZ 

In April, one of our recent Youth Leadership Training attendees, Jo, approached the PSAY team to see what we could do to support her for an upcoming event.

Jo is a member of the Christchurch Wellness and Safety committee at Land Information New Zealand (LINZ). Christchurch held a Wellness and Safety expo on the 16th of May. The focus was wellness as a whole which included highlighting the importance of mental and physical wellness and making use of the support and services available to staff.

Here’s Jo’s take on how the event went

The day started with a shared breakfast of Posh Porridge (made by the committee) which everyone enjoyed while we had external guest speakers make presentations regarding different elements of Wellness. We also got a local gym on board who very generously offered us a 21 day challenge that included free gym access for everyone which has been very popular.

The PSA’s presence was felt with the promotion of the holiday houses (the importance of rest, relaxation and work life balance) and highlighting the support that the PSA and PSAY can offer.

After breakfast we had stands/stations set up that showcased the following topics that people could drop in and visit over the rest of the morning.

  • Emergency Services at LINZ
  • The role of the wellness and safety committee
  • Wellbeing and Mental Health stand
  • The various Support Services available to staff (including PSA)

We had interactive components to the stands which very were well received (considering prizes were up for grabs).

The day was a great success and we felt a high level of engagement was achieved. We received some very positive feedback and the overall feeling was that folks got a lot out of it. I personally was impressed at the range of feedback we received which shows there was a little something for everyone on the day

I’d just like to give a quick shout-out to the amazing PSA/PSAY organising team for their help with providing goodies for the event. Your support was very valuable.

Congress 2018 – Why is it important?

PSA Congress is a biennial event where representatives from across the union come together to make decisions about PSA rules and priorities, and elect the PSA president. Congress is the highest decision-making body of the PSA.

We are proposing a formal rule change to create roles for young members on governance structures including the Executive Board.

Why should you be interested?

It is vital that we have a strong youth presence at Congress. The PSA Youth Network has selected three young members to represent our network at Congress, but we want to ensure we have a lot more young members there than that!

Congress is an opportunity for the youth network to make our mark on the PSA ; we can accelerate our priorities and further the PSAY agenda.

The reason why youth and all PSA members alike should be interested in Congress 2018 is because the sectors and networks of the PSA have an opportunity to propose remits, this including rule changes and proposals around PSA priorities to be debated and voted on by members at Congress.

With your help and support we can do it!

Youth Leadership Training (YLT)

Thank you very much to those who took part in the last round of youth leadership training. The EOIs for the next round of YLT have closed for Wellington, Christchurch and Hamilton. If you applied you  should have received a response by now about whether you’ve been selected or not.

The EOIs for Auckland and Whangarei will go out shortly, so keep an eye on your inbox!

As a reminder for you all, here are the confirmed dates for the upcoming YLT:

  • Wellington 29 May 2018
  • Christchurch 14 June 2018
  • Hamilton 26 June 2018
  • Auckland 22 June 2018, 5 July 2018
  • Whangarei 3 July 2018

At the moment we are in the process of collating feedback from previous YLT attendees throughout the country. The feedback covers the following:

  • What we can do to improve the training
  • How we can make it more interesting and engaging for you

Thanks to all of your helpful contributions, we’ve had plenty of paperwork to sift through and make sense of. But, know that we hear you, and we’ll do our best to accommodate as many view points in the training as possible.

Public Service International (PSI)

On 21 -22 of May, two of our youth representatives, Kelly Cotter and Lauren Hourigan, attended the Oceania Sub Regional Advisory Committee Meeting of the Public Services International (PSI) in Sydney.

The experience has definitely been a fruitful one. Please stay tuned for the next newsletter where we’ll brief you all on what was discussed and learned during the meeting.

Member Q&A – Stephanie Poole

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What were your initial thoughts on signing up to do this Q&A?

I was stoked to be asked! But a little nervous about what to say :P 

What is your job and what do you do on an average day at work?

I'm a Physiotherapy Assistant for the Canterbury DHB. I work mainly with elderly patients who have had an injury or trauma to recover and rehabilitate - usually this means assisting the Physiotherapist in helping clients be able to sit up, stand, walk and do gentle exercises so that they can feel confident in their independence once they're discharged.

What was a highlight at work for you in the past month?

Unfortunately I've been off work the last little while due to some complications with my pregnancy, however - my absolute favourite part of my job is the patients! It’s always so inspiring to listen to their stories and get to build that rapport with them while seeing them overcome their injuries/illnesses and gain confidence back in themselves!

What would you say is the hardest thing about your job?

One of the hardest things about Older Persons Health is seeing the negative side of aging - illnesses like Alzheimers and dementia always impact the patient and their family in such a profound way, and it can be heart-breaking sometimes. But it always amazes me the positivity with which most people approach even the hardest of situations.

What do you enjoy about being a part of PSA and PSA Youth, and what brought you to join?

I'm extremely passionate about youth involvement in the future of our communities, so when I saw an opportunity had come up for the PSA Youth Leadership Training course I couldn't help myself! At the training day I got to meet so many inspiring PSAY members from all sorts of backgrounds - and it only enhanced my passion for youth leadership within the workforce!

What is your vision for young members of the PSA?

I would really like to see more awareness of the PSA and PSAY in workplaces and the community for young members! I didn't know about the PSA until I needed their help and I think that's a real shame! The PSA and PSAY do some awesome, positive things - So let’s get that great stuff out there!

How do you like to spend your time outside of work?

I have two dogs, a German Shepard and a Huntaway, so most of my time is spent with them and my husband outdoors! I'm also a student at the University of Canterbury, so I spend a lot of time in class and at events networking with other scholars!

What cause would get you out on the streets protesting and why?

Ooh that's a hard one! Lots of things really, LGBTQI+ advocacy, Mental Health advocacy, Māori and Indigenous rights.... the list goes on!

But I guess most relevant to my current situation is fair pay for the midwives! I wasn't able to attend the March for the Midwives event here in Christchurch, but I was there in spirit! These poor men and women give up so much of themselves, as well as their own time and money to support women at one of the most demanding and vulnerable times in their lives.... they deserve adequate support and pay for it!

What advice would you give your 16-year-old self?

Never doubt your worth, your values, or your strength.