Members of the public who plan to access Centrelink, Medicare or Child Support services this Friday 17 March are encouraged to use online and self-service options while planned industrial action by the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) is underway.
Department of Human Services General Manager Hank Jongen thanked the community for its patience and explained that the department is working hard to minimise disruption to the services they need.
“I can reassure people that ongoing customer payments will not be affected by the industrial action,” Mr Jongen said.
“It is possible however that there will be a reduced number of staff in our service centres and on the phones.
“I recommend people access self-service options available through myGov and the Centrelink, Medicare and Child Support mobile apps.
“We will also have arrangements in place to make sure that staff will still be available to help those in financial hardship and who need immediate assistance.”
The Department of Human Services and the CPSU are currently bargaining before the Fair Work Commission.
In its most recent offer, the department committed to maintaining virtually all existing staff entitlements, including all its family friendly entitlements. It is also offering staff a pay rise that is in line with community standards.
The department is also committed to providing staff with the opportunity to vote on a new enterprise agreement as soon as possible.
The department is, therefore, disappointed that the CPSU is undertaking industrial action while we continue to bargain.
The industrial action will not change the department’s position in terms of negotiations for a new enterprise agreement.
Information on digital self-service options is available at humanservices.gov.au/selfservice.