We met with senior officers of the State Service Management Office (SSMO) last Friday about arrangements relating to previous Premier Peter Gutwein’s decision to destroy the Department of Communities Tasmania and disperse a number of functions across various other state government agencies.
Neither the government nor the bureaucrats have provided any information about why they have to make such a drastic decision, regardless of public sector unions’ vehement opposition and evidence that this move is likely to be dangerous.
Unfortunately this meeting, though being the third of such meetings, has failed again to shed little light on an overarching change proposal. Instead, the government have set out arbitrary and hasty timeframes, seemingly attempting to push through the change. There are serious implications for your wages and conditions of employment that remain unanswered, and the government have given little consideration to how they’ll manage these issues.
Last week SSMO only provided us with incomplete change proposals for corporate services and Sport and Recreation corporate services. By doing this, they clearly want to deal with matters in a piecemeal way. We don’t accept this. We will only accept a comprehensive and complete change proposal for the whole of the agency.
We know you hold serious concerns about your jobs, but moreover, we know you are concerned about what this will bring to those you provide services to – the most vulnerable Tasmanians. This is particularly but not solely true for Child Safety and Housing workers. We share your deep and relevant concerns. We told SSMO on Friday that if they have no intention to provide you with a complete change proposal, we will consider what options remain for us to ensure it happens.
We are deeply concerned about the haste and timeframes established. We will keep you updated as any more information becomes available and will talk with you if we believe the change will happen before any of your concerns are addressed.
We’re looking forward to seeing you at member meetings soon.