PSA representatives, including POVB Chair Jason Charlton, met with government MPs to discuss the important role played by the state’s essential workers such as Prison Officers.
Mr Charlton, along with PSA Senior Vice President Juliette Sizer and Manager, Relationships & Strategy Malcolm Cochrane met with Premier Chris Minns, Deputy Premier Prue Car, Treasurer Daniel Mookhey, Corrective Services Minister Anoulack Chanthivong and Minister for Industrial Relations Sophie Cotsis.
In addition, the PSA delegation met with Labor MPs Karen McKeown, Warren Kirby, Tri Vo and Hugh McDermott; Greens MPs Jenny Leong and Tamara Smith; and Independent MP Alex Greenwich.
Mr Charlton talked to the ministers and MPs about bringing Parklea and Junee gaols back to the public system and an end to further privatisations. He said private companies and their shareholders should never make profits from prisons.
The PSA delegation talked about scrapping the wages cap and giving all essential services a decent pay rise that keeps ahead of inflation.
Mr Charlton said the new government needed to devise a better workers’ compensation scheme for Correctional Officers due to the high-risk environment we work in.
The PSA will be meeting with Minister Cotsis in the coming weeks to address injustices in the current compensation system. At present, Officers are ripped off on their PIAWE calculation if they are unfortunate enough to suffer a second workers’ compensation injury within 12 months of returning to work from a previous claim. The PSA is also fighting for Officers over the age of 67 to be protected by workers’ compensation.
The PSA also raised the unreasonable length of time it takes Corrective Services NSW to deal with disciplinary matters.
All MPs said they were supportive about the issues raised yesterday and it was a positive first step to introduce ourselves to the new government. The PSA encouraged MPs to meet Correctional Officers in their centres, listen to their stories and take the chance to really appreciate the extraordinary and diverse work we all do.