News in brief

A first for PSA Pasefika, a Budget 2021 update, news on our case against Inland Revenue, and more...

PSA Pacific blessing

A blessing was held in April to acknowledge a first for PSA Pasefika.

The blessing at PSA House celebrated the appointment of Ulualofaiga Mareko as the Pasefika Representative on the PSA Executive Board.

This appointment came after resolutions were passed at Congress to introduce Pasefika representation across the union.

The Network is also working to elect Vā Moana delegates in enterprises who will then determine their Pacific sector representative.

Main image: PSA Pasefika network celebrates Pasefika representation on the PSA executive board 

Budget 2021

News in briefThe PSA welcomed the Government's commitment in this year's budget to raise weekly benefit rates between $32 and $55 per adult by April 1 next year.

We’re also pleased significant funding has been allocated to support pay equity, including over $35 million between now and 2022
for the Care and Support Workers (Pay Equity) Settlement Act.

Home and community support workers receive hard-won recognition, with $81.8m to pay them their normal hourly rate for travel time and 10 minute paid breaks.

You can read CTU economist Craig Renney’s analysis of the budget, along with a look at the Government’s proposed social unemployment insurance scheme p. 18-20.

Inland Revenue Madison case appeal 

The PSA has sought leave to appeal the decision of the Employment Court in the Inland Revenue Madison litigation.

The PSA supported eight plaintiffs who worked in the IR call centre in their claim they were in fact employees of IR because they worked under the control of IR, were integrated into its business, and did the same work as the directly employed IR employees that they worked alongside. They were, however, on inferior terms and conditions, including a lower rate of pay and a longer working day.

In May the Employment Court concluded that the employment relationship was between the workers and Madison, not with IR.

The Court found that a “careful arrangement” was set up between Madison and IR, and that the parties acted within the “agreed boundaries”.

The implications of this case reach wider than Inland Revenue.

The use of contract and labour hire workers as a way to undercut the rights of workers and privatise the delivery of public services needs to be challenged politically and industrially, as well as legally in the Court of Appeal.

We will continue our work as a union to remedy this.

Making health & safety meaningful

News in briefThe workplace health and safety regulator, Worksafe, the PSA and health and safety representatives recently signed a Health and Safety Charter.

The charter lays out their joint commitment to a safe and healthy workplace and paves the way for a worker engagement and particpation agreement.

The PSA intends the Charter to be a model for other employers within the public sector.

HealthCarePlus Grants for Good

Get in quick to apply for a grant that could make a real difference.

Last year PSA members were among recipients of almost $200,000 in grants from HealthCarePlus Grants for Good.

The grants support a wide range of amazing projects both large and small and help individuals with funding for professional development or hardship.

This year's grant themes are the future of work, wellbeing, equity, and responding to climate change.

So if you have a great idea or need help to fund your research or professional development a Grant for Good could be for you.

Got to https://info.healthcareplus.org.nz/grants-for-good for more information. Applications close July 9.

Local Government review

The PSA supports the recently announced Local Government review but is keen to make sure those who work in the sector are at the heart of the mahi.

The review will focus on how local government can better focus on its core work of public wellbeing – including the wellbeing of workers.

Local government plays an important role in our democratic system, giving people a voice in the leadership of their communities and in the governance of services and publicly owned assets.

We hope to see a strengthening of democracy, a commitment to the public ownership of services and climate action to protect people and the environment.

The review is due to report back in early 2023.

Nurses strike

News in briefThe PSA flew the flag in support of 30,000 Nurses Organisation members who went on strike for eight hours on June 9.

The strike came after DHBs failed to offer pay that fairly valued their work, or to ensure safe staffing in hospitals and DHB facilities.

Also in this issue:


"Thanks for making a difference"

We’ve been making sure your right to negotiate for pay increases is respected in the corridors of power and at the bargaining table.

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President's message

Welcome to this edition of Te Mahinga Ora, I hope you enjoy reading about the mahi your union has undertaken over the past three months.

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Long road to fair pay and conditions for support workers

Our home support workers have some of the worst employment conditions in New Zealand, and the PSA is determined to help change that with a Fair Pay Agreement (FPA).

Read More

Fair Pay Agreements – what are they all about?

All too often, employers compete for contracts by holding down pay and undermining conditions in an endless race to the bottom.

Read More

One Public Service

Common terms and conditions for all

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Unsung heroes reach well-deserved pay settlement

Our members at ESR are some of the unsung heroes of New Zealand’s Covid response.

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A massive contribution

Our PSA Kaumātua is stepping down from his duties after a lifetime of mahi for our union and Māori workers.

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Fighting for a better life

Janice Panoho has been fighting for a better life for Māori since she joined the 1975 Land March and is still pursuing that goal in her new leadership role with the PSA.

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Protect yourself, protect your community

Many of our members in health and community services are among those to be receiving their Covid-19 vaccine as the rollout continues across Aotearoa.

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“We always have tamariki at heart”

Supporting tamariki and whānau to thrive is something we all want to strive for - but some of Aotearoa’s most needed workers are undervalued for this important mahi.

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Wearing purple for library workers

Library workers and their supporters wore purple on May 13, to mark the second anniversary of our library assistants pay equity claim.

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Building back better?

Nobody anticipated the scale of extra spending in this year’s budget, but CTU economist Craig Renney asks where is the vision for building back better?

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Social insurance - an idea worth discussing

A new scheme to cover a chunk of the wages of people who lose their jobs is an idea worth considering argues Sam Gribben of E tū.

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Ināia tonu nei: The time for climate action is now

The PSA welcomes the Climate Change Commission’s advice that workers and unions help design a strategy that ensures the costs of transitioning to a low-emissions Aotearoa are shared fairly.

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A giant whose shoulders we stand on

Elizabeth Orr was a leader in pay equity and equal pay in Aotearoa for more than 50 years.

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Leading the way

When asked what attracted her to the study of marine macro-algae, NIWA delegate Wendy Nelson joked about getting paid to go to the beach.

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Kia Kaha Te Reo Hangarau!

Technology is an essential tool in modern workplaces. Here are some kupu and phrases that could come in handy at work or at home

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Signing for solidarity

As we marked NZ Sign Language Week, Janet Stokes, one of our first Deaf delegates, told Te Mahinga Ora about her mahi for the union and Deaf community.

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Health and safety awards

Celebrating the exceptional work of our health and safety representatives across the public sector.

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"A perfect storm"

As the effects of Covid and rising authoritarianism ravage much of our region, UnionAID’s Michael Naylor asks us to dig deep for their appeal.

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Around & About

In this issue our photo page features the Nurses' Strike, Pink Shirt Day and much more

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