Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Troubled Defence Force could become industrial battleground

31 January 2013

Troubled Defence Force could become industrial battleground
The Public Service Association is warning there will be no improvement in morale at the New Zealand Defence Force until there is a willingness to address high attrition rates and improve pay and conditions for civilian staff.

The Auditor General has released a highly critical report saying restructuring and cutbacks have led to a drop in morale and capability.

The PSA which represents civilian staff says pushing military personnel into civilian positions as part of a hasty, top-down restructure, has created a number of problems.

“Military staff who have been part of the civilianisation process have seen their pay and terms of conditions eroded, and there have been large numbers of resignations. The result is that remaining staff are facing unreasonably high workloads and demands and, as the Auditor-General has pointed out, that has led to a reduction in Defence Force capability,” says PSA Assistant Secretary Basil Prestidge.

“The government is trying to make savings through changing military personnel into civilian staff which signals that the civilian workforce is underpaid. With more and more staff becoming civilianised the Defence Force should be seeking to remedy that as a matter of priority.”

The PSA is currently in collective agreement negotiations with the Defence Force and says senior civilian management have put a zero percent pay rise on the table and have shown an unwillingness to negotiate on that.

“Defence Force staff have been through a very difficult restructuring process and it’s no secret that morale is at rock bottom. Many have not had a pay rise in real terms for about five years. They deserve to be valued and have an expectation that they will see improvement in their pay and conditions,” Basil Prestidge says.

‘If the Defence Force wants to improve morale and retain staff it needs to address these issues, otherwise it will simply add to its woes by ending up with an industrial battle on its hands.”


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Labour: Little Announces New Shadow Cabinet

“Labour had an impressive intake of fresh faces after last year’s election and newest MPs have now had a year to show what they’re made of. This reshuffle rewards hard work and continues my drive to renew our Caucus line up." More>>


Because Reasons: Someone Reckons David Seymour Is Politician Of The Year

Trans Tasman's 11th annual Roll Call has thrown a curve ball this year, ignoring the likes of John Key, Bill English, and Winston Peters to pick its politician of the year from the ranks of the new generation. More>>


Whaling: NZ Deeply Disappointed By Japan's Decision

“New Zealand is strongly opposed to whaling in the Southern Ocean. We call on Japan to take heed of the 2014 International Court of Justice decision and international scientific advice concerning their whaling activities.” More>>


Relevant Consents Gained: Government Unveils RMA Reform Package

The government has formally hauled down the flag on its attempts to alter the balance of environmental and economic priorities in the Resource Management Act, unveiling a 180-page Resource Legislation Amendment Bill containing reforms that have been largely endorsed by most political parties. More>>


Closing Schools And Such: Interim Redcliffs Decision Announced

“While the school’s board has argued that circumstances that could give rise to potential disruption are extremely unlikely, advice from technical experts has shown these concerns cannot be ruled out." More>>


Jane Kelsey: High Court Can’t Make Groser Provide TPPA Information Faster

‘This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Groser’s stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, following a High Court order that he reconsider the Official Information Act request I made last January’, said University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, first applicant in the case. More>>

Werewolf 58: No Climate For Change

The last time the global community tried to take collective action on climate change the world’s leaders finally came to agree that every not-too-onerous effort should be made to hold global warming to 2°C above the pre-industrial average. At Paris, all 150 participant countries nations will have put forward their pledges... On the information available, New Zealand's is the second weakest contribution of any nation in the developed world. More>>


Lambton Quay Shutdown: Object Was Made To Look Like Bomb

Police cordoned off part of Lambton Quay Wednesday afternoon, saying that a suspicious package had been found. Buildings were evacuated and buses were detoured. The army’s explosive ordnance disposal unit was brought to the Quay. More>>


Public Sector Still Shrinking: Record Low Number Of 'Backroom Bureaucrats'

Ongoing restraint in the public sector and a focus on better frontline services has seen a further reduction in the number of core Government employees, State Services Minister Paula Bennett says. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news