INDEPENDENT NEWS

Ministry of Justice corrects public record

Published: Mon 30 Nov 2009 12:42 PM
Ministry of Justice corrects public record
“The Ministry of Justice is extremely disappointed that the PSA has for the second time refused to take our offer to staff to vote on,” says Mr Hampton, General Manager Higher Courts. “We are equally disappointed that our attempts at mediation have not resolved this dispute and that the PSA has now issued statements that are grossly inaccurate.
“We consider the bargaining table is the appropriate place to discuss the PSA’s pay claim,” says Mr Hampton. “However, the Ministry will correct grossly inaccurate public statements issued by the PSA. It is a disservice to members to issue such inflammatory and untrue comments and does not assist in resolving the dispute.”
While it is important for the public record to show the facts, the Ministry does not intend to respond on each point, and has reserved its public comment for the most serious allegations.
“Far from the Ministry refusing to give any staff a pay rise, we have already paid $2 million in pay increases this year” says Mr Hampton. “This went to people in the bottom third of the pay scale, many of whom are PSA members.
“The Ministry worked with the PSA last week on the costings of their PSA claim and the PSA was unable to demonstrate any miscalculation on the Ministry’s part. It is therefore untrue for those costings to be now labelled as grossly exaggerated.
“Contrary to what the PSA has stated, just two current Ministry staff received a performance-related at-risk payment, and no senior managers received a pay increase, including those who were contractually entitled to receive them.”
The PSA has previously described the Ministry’s pay offer as delivering increases to the “favoured few.” “This is another example of mis-information by the PSA as the Ministry’s pay offer would deliver increases to more than 80% of staff in 2010 and one-off payments to 78% of staff in 2009,” says Mr Hampton.
The Ministry has left open a new offer following the end of talks aimed at resolving the dispute and remains committed to reaching a settlement with the PSA through negotiation. The improved pay offer would provide money to staff before Christmas.
"While the Ministry's new written offer has been rejected, the Ministry has left it open for acceptance until noon Friday, 4 December 2009 to give the PSA time to put it to its members.
“There is a reality to the current economic climate that the PSA refuses to accept.
“We apologise to court users who may face further disruption as a result of this dispute. The Ministry is working hard to minimise the impact of any potential industrial action.”
ENDS

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