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Public service data - mixed picture

PSA media release 6 November2001

Public service data - mixed picture

"While the PSA is pleased to see the number of public servants has increased for the first time in over 10 years there are still major concerns about turn over rates and pay," says PSA National Secretary Richard Wagstaff.

Figures released by the Minister of State Services today show the number of full-time equivalent public servants has gone up by 4.5% since June last year. The number of staff on fixed term contracts has also gone down and is at the lowest level since data has been collected. "We are pleased that the government has started the process of re-building the capacity of the public service after years of neglect," said Mr Wagstaff.

However, the figures show that turnover rates have gone up slightly since last year and in the IT area it is over 30%. "It is difficult to see how the government will be able to implement its vision for E-government when it is losing nearly a third of IT staff every year," said Mr Wagstaff.

The report notes twenty two departments reported difficulty attracting suitable applicants for positions due to remuneration levels, working conditions and/or reputation.

"Pay continues to be a major block to rebuilding capacity and capability in the public service. Moral of staff is very low and will not be boosted by figures released yesterday showing some Chief Executives are enjoying salaries of over $300,000 while some staff in places like the Department of Courts earn less than $20,000," he said.

ENDS

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