26 February 2013
PPTA launches group legal action over Novopay
With the government still dithering over helping those hit by the Novopay nightmare, PPTA is launching a group legal action on behalf of its members.
PPTA president Angela Roberts said the association would be seeking compensation for members for the hurt, humiliation and financial suffering caused by the dysfunctional payroll system.
The association’s national executive met at the weekend, resolving to open a legal channel that will enable members to take collective legal action.
Despite reassuring noises made by government representatives, as late in the piece as yesterday there were still no definite plans to roll out a resourced survival package for affected schools and their employees, Roberts said.
In the face of this, and growing pressure from struggling members, PPTA has decided to take matters into its own hands, she said.
“Members’ patience and goodwill has all but run out. Continued Novopay errors mean schools, students, principals and administration staff are at the end of their tether.
“Almost daily I am receiving reports from branches of the extent of errors that are short-changing thousands of our members and creating untold stress and personal financial instability for many.”
Members were invited to join the collective action by contacting PPTA either directly or through a survey and already responses were pouring in, Roberts said.
“We invite members who have suffered emotionally or financially through being paid incorrectly or not at all to get on board with the action.”
Because of the complexity of the case the association was looking at a number of legal options, Roberts said.
“It is an unusual situation in that traditionally any action would be taken against a school’s board as the employer, but in this case the boards are just as frustrated with Novopay as their staff.
“We are discussing the issue with our lawyers while we collect data and prepare witness statements,” she said.