Customs loses half its Tassie staff: CPSU members to rally Tues 31 July.
30 July 2012, 3:06pm
Paul Blake CPSU Tasmanian Regional Secretary
Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) delegates from various Government departments will gather outside the Customs office tomorrow in support of Customs staff.
Customs staff were last week told of a proposal to cut nearly half their Tasmanian staff- some 17 jobs.
The union representing the federal public sector has warned that the quality of local intelligence services will fall if the proposal is followed through.
The CPSU says that there are more jobs being taken out of the state and the Government's own data - complied by the Australian Public Service Commission - shows that more than 350 Tasmanian federal public sector jobs have been cut since 2008.
Quality concerns "Combined with the recent loss of 38 staff from the Department of Human Services which includes Centrelink, Child Support and Medicare it shows that Tasmanians are, yet again, being short-changed when comes to essential public services, and a fair share of federal public sector jobs," CPSU's Tasmanian Regional Secretary, Paul Blake, said.
Mr Blake said that with over two thirds of all federal public sector positions located outside of Canberra, the across the board funding cut of 4 per cent for the coming year - the so-called extra efficiency dividend - is starting to bite deep in Tasmania.
"Many federal public sector workers have contacted the CPSU concerned about an alarming decline in quality - both in services and jobs - as these funding cuts start to wash through from the mainland into our local communities," he said.
"It is even more concerning when particular agencies just decide to remove Tasmania from their structure.
"From a workforce of over 5000 nationally; 44 jobs are being cut from District Offices, with Tasmania losing 17 positions, Mr Blake said. "It is difficult for staff to swallow when they see the ACT increasing staff over the last decade from 1000 to 1600 positions.
"It doesn't help that the jobs being removed are also higher level jobs, which increases the brain drain from Tasmania."
Mr Blake said he was shocked to hear the other day that a Customs staff member was told "you're in Tasmania for a lifestyle, not a career".
"We constantly hear about Tasmanians having to move interstate for work and career progression.
"Rather than forcing people to move to Canberra, the Federal Government should be investing in Australia's
regions, allowing states like Tasmania to retain and develop home-grown talent, while attracting the best and brightest to help make a national contribution here locally," Mr Blake said.
CPSU Delegates rally 12.30pm Tuesday 31st July Where: Customs Building 25 Argyle St Hobart
For Comment - Paul Blake -0408 465 689 - CPSU Regional Secretary (Tasmania)