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PSA Ready To Resume Negotiations With DOL

June 12, 2008

PSA Ready To Resume Negotiations With Department of Labour

The PSA is ready to resume negotiations with the Department of Labour.

Around 750 Department of Labour staff, who belong to the PSA, went on strike from 10 am to midday today. This included border security officers at Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch airports, health and safety inspectors, immigration officers, labour inspectors and industrial mediators.

They are seeking a new pay setting system and a 4% across-the-board pay increase.

The PSA rejected an offer presented by the Department of Labour this morning because it did not include backdating of the pay increase to November 1 last year.

“We were disappointed that the offer did not include backdating of the pay increase to November 1 last year,” says PSA National Secretary Richard Wagstaff.

“That’s because the department had agreed that we would be negotiating the backdating of the increase past April 1.”

The PSA returned to the negotiating table yesterday afternoon on the basis of this assurance from the department.

“We have now offered to resume the negotiations tomorrow, and over the weekend if necessary, to resolve the backdating issue,” says Richard Wagstaff. “The department has not responded to this offer to resume the bargaining.”

The PSA has served notices of more two-hour strikes, by Department of Labour staff from tomorrow, Friday June 12, and every day until Thursday June 19.

“We began this bargaining back in September last year and the department’s staff want to reach a settlement,” says Richard Wagstaff. “We believe if we can resolve the backdating issue we can achieve a settlement.”

The PSA does not agree with the department’s claim that border security has not been compromised as the result of the industrial action by its staff.

“We understand that normal border security standards have not been maintained due to the industrial action,” says Richard Wagstaff.


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