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Labor axes workplace conditions

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SENATOR GARY HUMPHRIES Liberal Senator for the Australian Capital Territory Shadow Parliamentary Secretary to the Shadow Attorney-General Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Materiel

***MEDIA RELEASE*** 10 JAN 2013


Commonwealth public service employees have returned to their workplaces to find the New Year has been marked with a deterioration of workplace conditions due to Labor’s budget cuts.

For example, answers to Questions on Notice received from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship reveal that in just over four months DIAC has removed over two thirds of the plants that formerly adorned their offices.

“Despite having reneged on their promise to deliver a budget surplus, Labor’s cuts are still having a very real and very visible impact on the APS”, ACT Liberal Senator Gary Humphries said today.

“Labor continue to promise no job cuts or reduction in workplace conditions - clearly that is complete rubbish.

“Labor may want to call cuts to the APS an efficiency dividend, or in this case an ‘accommodation realignment exercise’, but public servants aren’t falling for it - they know these are just code words for cuts”.

A range of studies has shown that having plants in the workplace increases morale and productivity with one study showing productivity in an office increased 12% and employees’ blood pressure and stress levels were lowered.

“When you’re working inside an office block for most of the day, it’s important that conditions are comfortable and welcoming for workplace productivity and for morale.

“Public servants are noticing the look and feel of their workplace changing for the worse and have lodged complaints about it - it seems these complaints are falling on deaf ears though.

“Our public servants do a great job, a lot of the time under pressure. It is not fair to whittle away at their workplace conditions and expect the same level of enthusiasm and workplace satisfaction.

“Labor has degraded confidence in the APS and clearly has no intention on stopping now.

“Public servants deserve to know in advance about their conditions of employment rather than finding out by surprise with each new slash to their area budget”, Senator Humphries concluded.


Media contact is Ross Macdonald 0407 904 818

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