Fearsome fighter


Fearsome fighter

PSA delegate Kelly Broerse says her colleagues at the Institute of Environmental Science and Research (ESR) in Auckland are used to her showing up at work with black eyes and bruises.

That’s because when she’s not involved in a tough round of negotiations, or doing her day job as a forensic technician, Kelly is likely to be found in the Muay Thai kickboxing ring. 

She has an impressive record of 14 wins from 17 fights, and currently holds one New Zealand and two South Pacific titles.

WORLD TITLE FIGHT

Kelly also fought unsuccessfully for an amateur world title in Brisbane in September. Not bad for a woman who got into the sport just to keep fit.

“It’s a really big achievement fighting for a world title. But I’m most proud of actually getting in the ring. The anxiety when you are waiting to get in there with someone who wants to smash you is insane,” Kelly says.

Muay Thai boxing is a stand-up form of martial arts and Kelly says it’s attracting a growing number of female fighters in New Zealand.

She says a competitive nature has helped her succeed in the ring, along with a strong work ethic.

DREAM JOB

Kelly brings the same determination to succeed to her “dream job”, processing DNA crime samples from all over New Zealand.

“It’s not glamorous, my team doesn’t attend crime scenes. But while the police and other teams are the frontline, it’s rewarding to know we are involved in finding the truth.”

Kelly says her workmates make jokes about ‘keeping her hands up’ when they see her fight wounds – but they are also extremely supportive, attending fights or watching them on You Tube. In turn, Kelly has shown her support for her colleagues in her role as a delegate.

“I’ve been on the negotiating team this year and have been involved in restructuring. So sometimes we are the middle men during all of that which can be challenging. 

“But it’s also been great for my personal and professional growth, helping to develop my confidence in dealing with issues, and public speaking. And it’s been a great insight into ESR and other parts of our business.”

Fighter

Also in this issue:


President's Message

In October I was fortunate to attend the Council of Trade Unions Conference along with other members of the PSA delegation.

Read the full post

Obituary: Lynn Middleton

PSA members and staff are deeply saddened by the recent and sudden death on November 13 of former PSA national secretary Lynn Middleton.

Read the full post

Working for Free

For Pasefika women the statistics are even more damning – they’ve been working for free since September 29 due to a 25.5% pay gap. The pay gap is almost as dire for wāhine Māori – a 22.1% pay gap left them working for free since October 12.

Read the full post

Kindly leading the way to Equal Pay

For Pasefika women the statistics are even more damning – they’ve been working for free since September 29 due to a 25.5% pay gap.

Read the full post

Stand Up for Library Workers

At the launch delegate Chantalle Smith spoke of how research for their equal pay claim had found the skills required to do their job could be broken down into 22 separate categories.

Read the full post

Mana Wahine: ‘Our passion is perceived as a threat'

A survey of wāhine Māori in the PSA has drawn a fantastic response - with more than 900 members taking the time to tell us about their employment experiences.

Read the full post

Stark statistics help fight for equal pay and transparency

Your salaries generally reflect the gender and ethnic pay gaps seen in the wider workforce with Pākeha men well out in front of other groups.

Read the full post

Fair Pay Agreements will give workers a fairer deal

That’s why we’ve made a submission on the Government’s new discussion document on FPAs and have been encouraging members to make sure their voices are heard.

Read the full post

Honours for workers on frontline

The inaugural Public Service Day – Te Rā Kāwanatanga was held last year so this is the second year the awards have been handed out.

Read the full post

PSAY Hui Inspires Success

After joining the PSA earlier this year, the DOC worker decided to attend the PSAY Hui in August.

Read the full post

Pasefika Voices on Climate Strike

The PSA proudly supported the School Strike for Climate in September. For some of our Pasefika members the effects of climate change are already hitting home. They tell us why they took part in the rally on Parliament.

Read the full post

“It opens their eyes”: Sector Māngai elected at Hui

Their role is to organise and advocate for Māori members in their sectors. They also represent their sectors on Te Kōmiti o Te Rūnanga o Ngā Toa Awhina and on sector committees.

Read the full post

Reducing Māori Health Inequities

The convenor of Te Tira Hauora Kōmiti, a committee of Māori delegates across the DHB sector, presented their submission to the inquiry in November.

Read the full post

‘It’s important to have Māori and female voices at the table’

Staff from the Ministry’s policy teams have attended UN indigenous rights forums in Geneva and New York.

Read the full post

100 Years On - Labour is still not a Commodity

Its constitution still strikes a chord for those of us fighting for workers' rights:

Read the full post

Your voice, our system

The forums will focus on mental health & addiction services, Māori health inequities, and disability services.

Read the full post

A lifetime of discovery

As a curator of the hugely popular Awesome Forces exhibition at Te Papa Museum, and co-presenter of TV show, Coast New Zealand, he has also helped bring science to a wider audience.

Read the full post

Unity in Diversity

In the workplace union members seek to be visible, vocal and valued but for some workers being visible is a risk - not a right they are afforded.

Read the full post