Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Employees Lose Pay While Offenders Sleep

Wednesday 15 October 2003

Employees Lose Pay While Offenders Sleep

“Negotiations between NUPE Work Party Supervisors and the Department of Corrections have broken down as the employer appears to be trying to accommodate the low compliance level of sentenced offenders into our Collective Employment Agreement,” Janice Gemmell, Organiser for the National Union of Public Employees said today. Work Party Supervisors supervise offenders doing community work under the 2002 Sentencing Act (former Periodic Detention).

“Ironically it’s a case of Hard Labour - Soft Sentences,” says Janice Gemmell. “Work Party Supervisors do the hard labour while those sentenced are not even bothering to turn up.”

“Work Party Supervisors report to us that compliance for community work is only around 40% nationally. That means 60% of those sentenced not turning up. A sentenced offender can fail to turn up for weeks before they are breached. In some areas of the country the Department has been reportedly sending sentenced offenders home because it is raining instead of ensuring they do their community work. The community work sentence is the last sentence before prison yet it is plainly not being enforced.”

“The problem for Work Party Supervisors is that when the offenders do not turn up, the Department just send home the staff employed to supervise them that day. The staff should be used to encourage compliance or to do other outstanding work. In the past they would have driven round and got offenders out of bed,” says Janice Gemmell.

Janice Gemmell said that a Work Party Supervisor is rostered to work 9 hours a day yet the department can send them home and only pay them for three hours. “It is unacceptable that instead of chasing up offenders they send home employees. Rather than getting offenders out of bed to do their sentence, the Department seems to prefer saving on wages by sending our Work Party Supervisors home. Work Party Supervisors just want to know what they will earn each week just like other Permanent staff and get treated the same as other employees within the Department. Many Work Party Supervisors have over a decade’s service.”

“The Community Work sentence is failing and the cost of the failure is being borne by Work Party Supervisors and not the Department of Corrections,” says Janice Gemmell. “If truly serious about sentencing, the Government needs to ensure that sufficient resources are available to ensure compliance.”


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Government: Delivering Lower Card Fees To Business

Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister David Clark has today announced the Government’s next steps to reduce merchant service fees, that banks charge businesses when customers use a credit or debit card to pay, which is estimated to save New Zealand businesses ... More>>

SEEK NZ Employment Report: April 2021

OVERVIEW OF APRIL 2021: STATE OF THE NATION: April, for the second consecutive month, saw the highest number of jobs ever advertised on Applications per job ad fell 9% month-on-month (m/m). SEEK job ads were up by 12% m/m. SEEK job ads were ... More>>

Commerce Commission: Warns Genesis Over Business Billing Errors

The Commerce Commission has issued a warning to Genesis Energy Limited about billing errors concerning electricity line charges to business customers. Genesis reported the errors to the Commission. The Commission considers that Genesis is likely to ... More>>

Stats: Lower Job Security Linked To Lower Life Satisfaction

People who feel their employment is insecure are more likely than other employed people to rate their overall life satisfaction poorly, Stats NZ said today. New survey data from the March 2021 quarter shows that 26 percent of employed people who thought ... More>>

The Conversation: The Outlook For Coral Reefs Remains Grim Unless We Cut Emissions Fast — New Research

A study of 183 coral reefs worldwide quantified the impacts of ocean warming and acidification on reef growth rates. Even under the lowest emissions scenarios, the future of reefs is not bright. More>>

The Conversation: Why Now Would Be A Good Time For The Reserve Bank Of New Zealand To Publish Stress Test Results For Individual Banks

Set against the backdrop of an economy healing from 2020’s annus horribilis , this week’s Financial Stability Report (FSR) from the Reserve Bank (RBNZ) was cautiously reassuring: the country’s financial system is sound, though vulnerabilities remain. More>>