Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Ministry for Pacific Peoples jobs set to be cut

Photo: David Unwin/The Post

The Public Service Association trade union says brutal government spending cuts that will see the size of the Ministry for Pacific Peoples cut by 40% will hit Pasifika communities hard. 

PSA national secretary Duane Leo says the cuts will have far reaching consequences for the health and wellbeing of Pasifika families in New Zealand and across the Pacific. 

“The 40% reduction is going to have a huge impact on a small Ministry serving a population of about 400,000 Pasifika people in New Zealand, many of whom have close links across the Pacific.

“This is a community that needs dedicated government support. We know that Pasifka families are more likely to live in overcrowded, unhealthy housing, and that their families are more likely to struggle financially than other New Zealanders. The Pasifika population has also grown rapidly – by 43% between 2006 and 2018, twice the rate of New Zealand’s population.”

It is understood that the Ministry has told staff that it is seeking voluntary redundancies and to redeploy and reassign staff as it looks to shed 63 of 156 positions, of which 31 are vacant. 

Leo says, “these cuts show the low level of importance this Government accords the Pasifika community. Unfortunately, this isn’t surprising given a senior Cabinet member joked before the election about blowing the ministry up.

“Once again, we are seeing the cold, hard reality of the choice this Government has made – giving $3 billion in tax cuts to landlords, is somehow deemed more important, than supporting important and at times vulnerable communities,” says  Leo.

Some of the public sector cuts announced to date:
Ministry for Primary Industries
Ministry of Health – 25% of workforce impacted
MBIE second round of voluntary redundancies
ACC deep cuts could mean injured people forced to return to work too soon
Education – reduction in head count underway
Customs – voluntary redundancies and early retirement called for
Oranga Tamariki – staff cuts on the table
Fire and Emergency NZ – Firefighting frontline not immune from cuts
Internal Affairs considering job cuts
Auckland Airport queues worsened by lack of Aviation Security staff
Spending cuts could weaken police and defence frontline services, MPs warned
Crown Law – loss of jobs
Family and sexual violence – Te Puna Aonui
Ministry of Social Development considering voluntary redundancies
Ministry of Housing and Urban Development considering job cuts

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