21 May 2020
PSA Negotiating Position - Salaried Enterprise Bargaining
The PSA’s negotiating position is based on extensive engagement with members.
Members have consistently provided valuable contributions through a variety of means – and the PSA has in turn provided extensive information through a number of different channels.
Members have clearly demonstrated your understanding of the importance of the content of an enterprise agreement, and your commitment to retaining and building on the hard-won protections enshrined in your enterprise agreement.
An enterprise agreement is, after all, a statement and measure of the level of respect and dignity underpinning the employment relationship.
Members have consistently told us the most important things to them are job protection; protection from, and processes to deal with, unreasonable workloads; maintaining current conditions of employment; maintaining effective redeployment systems and processes; and a fair and reasonable pay increase. These are the matters we have emphasised with the government at every single meeting.
Some members in their recent feedback have raised the concept of a “roll-over” agreement. Rolling over the current agreement simply means retaining all current conditions. The PSA has consistently emphasised with government this is what is most important to members. The PSA has therefore had this concept on the table from the very first meeting. However the government’s position has been that it does not support this concept. And enterprise agreements require “agreement”.
The PSA has previously advised members in summary form the modest improvements members are seeking through this enterprise bargaining process. Themes summarising these modest improvements have been unanimously endorsed by the PSA Council and Worksite Representatives who have attended our enterprise bargaining seminars.
We have sought and received membership feedback on these themes. These themes will now be put on the negotiating table at the next enterprise bargaining meeting on 27 May 2020 as part of the PSA’s negotiating position – that is, in addition to the most important issues identified above.
The themes include:
- strengthening the commitment to ongoing employment
- greater protection against inappropriate behaviours in the workplaces
- hours of work – for clarity about hours and related matters and for equitable and consistent shift work conditions
- Parental Leave - to ensure equity of access, no disadvantage from transferring to a safe job, and addressing the disadvantage arising from absences from the workplace on parental leave
- improving special leave provisions, so that, for example, leave for volunteers in emergency services is consistent with the federal provisions
- ensuring that all relevant agencies and authorities and their employees are covered by the agreement
- dealing with specific career group issues, including, for example, some AHP, AHA, TGO, and OPS Stream matters
- dealing with some agency specific matters including SA Pathology, CFS and SES, and Corrections matters.
As is usual in negotiations the PSA will reserve the right to modify our position in relation to these themes as negotiations progress.
The government’s negotiating position remains the same as previously advised to members. The government still wants to remove your job security provisions (Appendix 1 – which includes Redeployment, Retraining and Redundancy - RRR) from the enterprise agreement. It wants to be able to declare workers excess and sack them within a matter of weeks. The current requirements are apparently just “too hard”. The government also still wants to reduce your rights to be consulted about changes in the workplace; and it still wants to water down your grievance and dispute rights.
The government’s current position is rooted on the “bargaining” part of “enterprise bargaining”. They want PSA members to exchange your job security and RRR provisions and other key protections for a pay rise. This is something PSA members are saying you are not willing to do.
The next Enterprise Bargaining General Meeting will held (via video conference) next week – Wednesday 27 May 2020.
As always, we continue to encourage members to provide feedback on any of these matters through your Worksite Representatives, your PSA Organiser, or by email to email@example.com.
With PSA membership you know you're protected at work and have access to a huge range of member benefits. We strive for a South Australian public sector in which staff are highly valued and well resourced, with fair and secure working conditions.