ACC Job Cuts Will Mean More Accidents And Injuries

The PSA is alarmed that ACC is proposing to shed 309 jobs including 29 dedicated injury prevention jobs at a time when the number and cost of injuries is rising.

ACC has today informed staff that significant cuts are proposed to be made across the organisation which employs more than 4000 people around New Zealand.

“ACC is a unique, world leading no-fault compensation scheme, and the envy of many other countries. It makes no sense to propose these cuts particularly as our working age population is increasing,” said Fleur Fitzsimons, Assistant Secretary for the Public Service Association Te Pūkenga Here Tikanga Mahi, Aotearoa.

“This is just more dumb stuff forced on ACC by the Government’s spending cuts. We will all pay the price for years to come with more accidents, injuries and harm.

Among the raft of changes across ACC are significant cuts to the Injury Prevention teams.

“This is an absolutely vital area dealing with workplace safety, prevention of sexual violence, and road safety. This work is all about ensuring accidents and injuries don’t happen in the first place. A government so focused on reducing costs and ‘better outcomes’ should be investing more in these areas, not less.

“ACC can’t possibly do better with fewer staff particularly when stress on the organisation is growing. All the evidence points to investment in injury prevention reducing harm and being the best value for money.

“ACC told the new Minister the ‘financial sustainability of the Scheme [for managing personal injury] is under pressure…With ongoing growth in claims volumes each year, it is more important than ever that ACC focuses on providing the right supports at the right time for clients’.

“It makes no sense to cut so many jobs when the organisation is already under so much pressure to look after those who are injured and given the priority to help prevent injury in the first place.

“ACC’s purpose under its legislation is to manage personal injuries, ‘minimising both the overall incidence of injury in the community, and the impact of injury on the community.’

“How can cutting so many jobs meet this purpose?

“This is a government which seems determined to make the lives of working New Zealanders worse – we have already seen the axing of Fair Pay Agreements, the real reduction in minimum wages and the extension of 90-day fire-at-will trials to all workers. Today’s cuts are another attack on working people.”

Final decisions will be announced on 26 June with the new structure proposed to be in place on 9 September.

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