The union representing local government workers has slammed southern Tasmanian councils for apparently taking steps toward amalgamation without consulting with their workforces.
Australian Services Union Branch Secretary Lisa Darmanin said it was grossly unfair to dedicated workers at three of Tasmania’s largest councils that there had been no real consultation before potential amalgamations were raised in the media.
Ms Darmanin said council workers deserve better than finding out through the media of a possible amalgamation involving Hobart, Glenorchy and Kingborough councils.
“The ASU is seeking appropriate consultation with council employees regarding potential impacts amalgamations will have on them and their livelihoods.”
“If there are any council amalgamations, we are calling on the Hodgman Government to guarantee that there will be no cuts to local jobs.”
“ASU members at councils deliver services that Tasmanians rely on every day, and these services are at risk if there were any reduction in staff as a result of amalgamations.”
“In addition to the impacts on council staff, amalgamations could be catastrophic for regional and rural communities where councils are often the major employer”.
“Amalgamations in the past have seen jobs and services sucked out of smaller communities with council operations moving to the larger centre.”
“These amalgamations have had devastating effects on regional communities and economies,” Ms Darmanin said.
The ASU has written to each of the councils that are reportedly taking steps toward amalgamation and have not yet consulted with staff asking for immediate consultation with council employees.
The union has also written to councils who are not pursuing amalgamation seeking a proactive consultative process in an environment where there renewed consideration of council amalgamations in some areas.