New Zealand’s Public Servants See Jobs Cut

New Zealand’s Public Servants See Jobs Cut

WELLINGTON, May 6 (NNN-RNZ) – New Zealand government ministries will see a total of 3,700 jobs cut, about 5.6 percent of the size of the country’s public service workforce.

Ministries involved in the jobs cut include the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Homes and Communities, the Department of Internal Affairs, the Ministry of Maori Development, and the New Zealand Qualifications Authority, among others, with the Ministry of Education planning to cut 755 roles.

Government-ordered spending cuts could see several thousand public service workers lose their jobs over coming months, depending on the decisions made in this year’s budget, according to the Public Service Association (PSA), which represents New Zealand’s public servants.

The roles proposed to be cut include principal advisers, policy managers, and communications and digital specialists.

The PSA today encouraged banks to be flexible and lenient when dealing with the many public service workers facing financial stress, following “the unprecedented and rapid layoffs now underway,” said a PSA statement.

Banks should consider helping those struggling because of loss of income, with a more flexible approach such as, offering interest holidays and interest-only periods with no penalty, said Kerry Davies, the PSA national secretary.

“These job losses are unprecedented both in scale and speed,” Davies said, urging banks to be receptive to the plight of many public service workers, especially at a time of the sharply rising cost of living, including higher mortgage rates.

“Public service workers are not alone in facing financial challenges right now. But rarely in recent times has this country seen so many workers laid off around the country, and over a short time frame,” he said, stressing the slowing economy and tightening labour market.

There were 65,699 full-time equivalent staff as of Dec 31, 2023, an increase of 4.1 percent from that of June 2023, according to the PSA.

– NNN-RNZ

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