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Government Cuts Reduce Staff Working On MBIE’s "Frontline Information Channels"

MBIE is proposing to cut the team that handles 1.8 million customer interactions a week with businesses and the public by about 25% as it responds to the Government’s cost cutting drive.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has proposed reducing its Information and Education (I&E) team by 30 roles, out of approximately 120 roles covered by its change proposal released on Thursday (April 4).

The I&E team sits within MBIE’s Engagement & Experience branch which has a "stewardship role over MBIE’s frontline customer information and education channels," the change proposal says.

In the change proposal MBIE says the team supports over 1.8 million customer interactions every week via the channels, products, and partnerships it is responsible for across MBIE’s functions in areas like business regulation, building, immigration, tenancy and employment.

The team helps to make it easy for people and businesses to understand their rights and obligations and to do the right thing, the change proposal says.

The work of the team includes overseeing and providing content for websites, the intranet, social media, publications and newsletters and events including webinars. It also includes staff working on community engagement and supporting Māori Service delivery.

The team provides information and education that helps people act with the confidence of knowing how to deal with regulatory requirements and access the information they need," Leo says.

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"This is just another cut to community and public services that are hollowing out the ability of government agencies to deliver the support businesses and people need," Leo says.

"These cuts are driven by the Government’s misguided choice to pursue tax cuts rather than making public services more effective," Leo says.

"The PSA will keep opposing these cuts and advocating for community and public services that will build a better future for Aotearoa."

The MBIE staff were briefed on the same day the Ministry of Health announcing it is proposing to cut 134 roles, including disestablishing the Suicide Prevention Office and the Ministry of Social Development called for voluntary redundancies across parts of its Service Delivery teams at national and regional offices, its Māori Communities and Partnerships team, and its people and capability, policy, strategy, communications functions as well as its transformation project.

This MBIE proposal for cuts is one of many at MBIE, which has also called for voluntary redundancies. MBIE has been required by the Government to find 7.5% in spending cuts.

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