Services for Northern Territorians dudded with Gunner Budget

The CPSU has condemned the Gunner Government’s second Budget, saying job and funding cuts to public services will hurt all people living in the Northern Territory.

The Budget bad news comes less than a fortnight after the Government announced it will axe at least 250 jobs in the Northern Territory public service, hurting workers and the critical public services they provide.

CPSU NT Regional Secretary Kay Densley said: “This is a lazy Budget from the Gunner Government. Once again they’ve taken short-sighted decisions in cuts to public services that will hurt people and communities.”

“The Gunner Government is continuing to apply a so-called ‘efficiency dividend’ on Territory agencies. There’s nothing efficient about arbitrary cuts, ramped up to 3% of departmental budgets this year. This policy over many years is slowly but surely eroding the quality and capability of the NT public service, hurting the services they provide and removing much-needed employment opportunities.”

“The wholesale job cuts confirmed in the Budget will also cause lasting damage to the Northern Territory community and its economy. Slashing jobs can only lead to lower quality and less reliable public services, or services disappearing altogether, and unreasonable workloads for the public sector staff who remain.”

“The Gunner Government needs to be far smarter in making future Budget decisions or living standards and opportunities will suffer. We are surveying NT public sector workers and they are identifying numerous alternative savings measures that could be applied without having the damaging consequences of what’s currently proposed.”

“Of course we are in this dire situation because of the tremendous damage the Turnbull Government has caused to the Northern Territory by slashing at least $3.4 billion in GST funding. Liberal politicians in Canberra have betrayed the Northern Territory, but the Gunner Government is making the wrong calls in responding to these challenges.”

“CPSU members will continue working hard to provide essential services to Territorians, making our community the best place it can be. We as a union will also continue lobbying both the Gunner and Turnbull Governments to give the NT a fair go.”