Benchmarking And Workforce Flexibility | Genuine Consultation Required

30 April 2019

Bulletins have recently been circulated by the Better Prisons Program Team about benchmarking and workforce flexibility stating that consultation has now commenced on these two proposed reforms and initiatives.

The PSA advises members that while the Department for Correctional Services may state that consultation has commenced, our view is that the consultation is grossly inadequate.

The PSA and its members are very frustrated about the lack of information and meeting times provided to date. The PSA fails to see how members can be asked to provide feedback on documents that provide little or no substance.

Providing documents at a Special Central Consultative Committee to Worksite Representatives (WSRs) followed by uploading of the same documents on the intranet for all staff does not constitute genuine consultation.

PSA members would be aware that PSA meetings are currently being organised at all sites in order for members to provide feedback and raise issues.

Rest assured, the PSA and WSRs will not be making any agreements on behalf of members in relation to benchmarking or workforce flexibility.

“Benchmarking” is generally used to reduce resourcing, entitlements, wages and safety standards because Governments compare public prisons with private prisons such as Mt. Gambier Prison where there are poorer conditions and safety. The PSA continues to demand the highest standards in public prisons and no privatisation.

The PSA is also vehemently opposed to casualisation of the workforce and will maintain that position throughout all discussions with DCS.

Members will be kept up to date as the Benchmarking and Workforce Flexibility reforms continue to be outlined and discussed.