Government Sector Employment Act 2013

28-Jun-2013
Still seeking answers. 

Public health unions are to (finally) have detailed discussions with the Ministry of Health next week.  Arising from some preliminary dialogue it would appear that the view of the Ministry is that the only convergence or alignment of the NSW Health Service with the Government Sector Employment Act 2013 (‘the Act) will be in relation to the new Executive Service provisions - although unions have flagged the need to (again) verify if this would include some current (senior officer equivalent) LHD employees who are award based.

Members may recall when this was raised with the Ministry previously after the Premier’s initial announcement of a shake-up of senior level positions, the Ministry rejected that award based employees would be so affected.

Further, the now Act would appear to already potentially include aspects that may impact on the NSW Health Service.  Public health unions collectively provided to the Public Service Commission (‘PSC’) a series of questions seeking clarity and responses in relation to the Act.  The PSC is yet to respond. 

Many of these questions will also be followed up at the meeting with the Ministry next week. 

These include but are certainly not limited to the following:

 1. Are the powers vested in the Public Service Commissioner (‘PSC’) in section 12 to make government sector employment rules limited by, for example, section 48 to only dealing with Public Service non-executive employees i.e. not applicable to the broader Government Service e.g. NSW Health Service?

 2. Can the PSC delegate the power to make government sector employment rules to an agency head for example under section 17(2)?

 3. It would appear that sections 63-69; and 71-74 of Part 5 Government Sector employees, would be directly applicable to the NSW Health Service.  Having said that sections 69 and 70 would only be applicable if any regulation promulgated specifically included the NSW Health Service [see for example section 69(i)] or specifically excluded it [see 69(6)]? 

 4. If this is the case, what is the current intention re the inclusion of the NSW Health Service and its employees via any regulation, as both these sections would introduce variance to current practice/procedure?