After years of staffing numbers going backwards and a hard-fought union led campaign, the CPSU is pleased to see the Albanese Labor Government investing $228 million into Services Australia, including 3,000 additional frontline staff.
Over the past decade, Services Australia has faced an onslaught of attacks and cuts. As a result, public service delivery has suffered, and a toxic workplace culture has continued to fester.
Australians rely on Services Australia and the staff who work there every day.
Uni students accessing youth allowance and rent assistance, new parents applying for parental leave and a new medicare card, older people acessing the pension, and communities going through bushfires, floods or drought.
We all need Services Australia to be efficient, effective and supportive. And the people who work there deserve a safe and respectful workplace.
The union is calling on the Albanese Labor Government to ensure that all 3,000 new positions are permanent additions to the Services Australia workforce, and to address the attraction and retention crisis by improving employees’ current pay and conditions, so that the work of cleaning up and rebuilding this agency can commence.
Quotes attributable to Melissa Donnelly, CPSU National Secretary:
“Over the past decade, the situation in Services Australia went from bad to worse with both Liberal and Labor Governments cutting staffing numbers when they should have been dramatically increasing them.
“This annoucement by the Albanese Labor Government comes after an extensive union led campaign that uncovered the dire consequences of cutting a crucial agency to the bone.
“Unacceptable call wait times, delays to claim processing, increases in customer aggression and high staff turnover are all symptoms of an agency in crisis.
“This staffing boost is good news for Australians who rely on Services Australia and the people who work there.
“3000 new staff won’t fix every problem facing Services Australia, but for the first time in a long time things are going in the right direction.
“These jobs must be a permanent addition to the Services Australia workforce, because temporary or short term staffing won’t fix this broken agency.
Media contact: Tori McGregor 0429 000 620