• Unions fear private sector won’t have the capacity to deal with clients with complex needs currently cared for by public sector
  • Women lose out in Baird’s unfair transfer offer of eight weeks pay and two years employment protections
  • Union movement mobilises against NSW government regulation to cut redundancy/severance payment rights of public sector workers

The Baird government’s privatisation is putting high level intellectual and physical disability services in jeopardy while forcing 10,000 hardworking disability workers into the private sector with limited employment protections.

PSA Assistant General Secretary Steve Turner told union snapshot the private sector does not have the capacity to deal with clients with complex needs currently cared for by the public sector and that workers are being unfairly stripped of a choice in the transfer. 

“This is an insult to the predominantly female workforce when previous privatisations such as power, ferries and waste services received 30 weeks payment and five years protections.” 

The Government has now introduced a new regulation extinguishing the right of NSW public sector workers to redundancy or severance payments where privatisations occur. This expands the appalling arrangements for disability workers across the public sector.

Unions NSW Secretary Mark Morey said he was concerned public sector workers would be forced into the private sector without any guarantee of the same level of redundancy entitlements they had accumulated over years.

The government until now offered structural adjustment packages, which provided an extra payment in lieu of existing government redundancy provisions including access to retraining and redeployment within the public sector.

"Our concern is that if private providers make them redundant in the longer term, they will have no option to be retrained and will have lost an entitlement for a better redundancy package. It is retrospective and there was no consultation over this, but we are lobbying to have the regulation disallowed," Mr Morey said.

*If you enjoyed this article and want to know more about what is happening in the NSW union movement sign up to Snapshot today and you'll receive a short, sharp shot of union news delivered to your inbox fortnightly.