Ombudsman investigation into SSC and Rebstock a welcome development

The Public Service Association (PSA) is welcoming the announcement that Ombudsman Professor Ron Paterson will investigate a complaint against Paula Rebstock and State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie by former diplomat Derek Leask.

Mr Leask complained after the release of a report written by Rebstock, as part of her inquiry into leaks during the restructuring at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT).

Brenda Pilott, PSA National Secretary, said “The PSA looks forward to contributing our views into this Ombudsman’s investigation.”

“The leak followed a flawed consultation process that left many staff feeling unable to express their views or offer their expert opinions based on decades of public service.
 
“It is critical that public servants are able to discuss proposals for restructuring by their employer freely between themselves, in their union and with their employer.
 
“Paula Rebstock’s investigation for the SSC was an unnecessary waste of public money and achieved nothing.
 
“Rebstock’s investigation had an inappropriately broad focus on staff conduct during a change management process. Serious accusations were made against senior public servants in the report published by the SSC, with no factual findings to support them.

“The PSA’s biggest concern is the message that the Rebstock report sends to public servants about their rights to have a say on their work environment,” said Brenda Pilott.