The Attorney Generals Department have advised staff that there is a need to find significant savings. Up to $10m per annum will be needed to meet the budgetary shortfall brought on by the increased efficiency dividend.
In order to make these savings AG’s are making cuts to a range of expenses
such as travel, consultancies and contractors, training and legal expenses.
However management report that these savings will not be sufficient and staffing
cuts will be needed to make up the shortfall. Natural attrition may account for
much of the staffing reduction, but the secretary has called for expressions of
interest from staff who may want a voluntary redundancy.
Who can put forward an EOI?
VRs will only be offered to those employees who are on-going and who provide
an expression of interest. We encourage all members interested in a voluntary
redundancy to seek financial advice and information, including from ComSuper
where relevant, before making a final commitment. Employees who take a VR can
not get another APS job for the length of their redundancy benefit period (i.e
if your entitled to 18 weeks pay then it would be 18 weeks before you could
apply for another APS position. Although, this requirement can be waived in
certain circumstances). If you do not want a VR do not register an EOI.
How much is a VR worth?
VR entitlements in your CPSU negotiated Enterprise Agreement are at Division
5.2 and more specifically at clauses 5.05 to 5.08. These clauses specifically
provide for severance pay based on years of service;
The amount of payment is equal to two weeks salary for each completed
year of service, plus a pro rata payment for completed months of service
since the last completed year.
The minimum sum will be 4 weeks salary and the maximum will be 48 weeks
If you were part time for any period, it will be calculated on a pro
The package is calculated at your substantive salary rate at the date of
If you were acting in a higher position for at least 1 year immediately
before the VR was offered your package will be calculated at the higher
position (pro rata for part time work)
Shift workers would receive a weekly average of shift penalties if they
undertook shift work for at least half the pays in the year before the VR
offer is made.
Many on-going allowances also count towards the package calculation
Absences from work which did not count towards service for any purpose
will not be used in the calculation of a VR package.
If I express interest in a VR will I get it?
Employees who express an interest in a VR package will not automatically
receive one. Management have advised that no final decision has yet been made on
the number of VRs to be offered. Offers will need to be made selectively to
ensure that the Department still has capacity to deliver on its commitments.
In order for the secretary to offer a VR (as per clause 5.05 of the EA) an
otherwise excess employee needs to be redeployed to perform the duties of the
person taking the VR package or else the position itself ceases to exist.
What happens if I am offered a VR?
At this stage management have not advised when the decision on how many VRs
will be offered, and to whom. If the secretary does offer VRs the employees will
be given a one month ‘acceptance period’. In that period of time the employee
will be provided with;
The amount of severance pay, pay in lieu of notice and paid up leave credits
The amount of accumulated superannuation contributions Options on superannuation
Taxation rules that apply to the package An amount of assistance (up to $750)
for financial advice
What about workload?
Management have flagged that a staff reduction of this magnitude will
necessitate changes to the work of the department. Realistically, there is a
limit to what is possible for an individual to complete in a day. We will be
consulting with management to ensure workloads for remaining staff are
manageable. If you are asked to do more work than is manageable, let your
manager know and contact your union delegate, so they can ensure the issue of
residual work is addressed.
What’s the union doing about job cuts?
The CPSU is strongly opposed to arbitrary job cuts to essential public
services such as those resulting from the increased “efficiency dividend”. We
are fighting for a well-resourced, cohesive and flexible APS that delivers
quality service and quality jobs.
CPSU provides expert advice and assistance to union members about redundancy
and redeployment rights and entitlements. Your union will work with you to
ensure your receive all your entitlements under the provisions of the enterprise
agreement as well as ensuring that AGD are following the Government’s new APS
Redeployment Policy which imposes obligations upon agencies in handling any
excess staffing situations. Not a member?
Join online now.
The CPSU will meet for a with management next Wednesday 11 April at 3pm to
discuss the VR offers, staffing profiles and a range of issues arising from the