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Independent News For The Australian Public Service
Edition Number 406. Updated Tuesday, 22 April 2014

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News in brief

Hundreds wait for redeployment

The Public Service's redeployment register has grown three-fold to 427 since late last year as staff who refused redundancy remain on the payroll and wait for new roles.

A staff member can join the registry, which covers all Australian Public Service Departments and Agencies, if their Department has declared their job excess but the employee does not want to take a redundancy, as there are no provisions for forced severance.

A spokeswoman for the Public Service Commission said ''home Agencies'' were responsible for finding work for staff on the register.

CPSU acts on 'draconian' social media policy

The Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) has lodged an industrial dispute with the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet over the lack of consultation over its new social media policy.

The policy bans criticism of the Government on social media and orders workers to report on their co-workers for any breach of policy.

"We have had many members contact us to express their anger and frustration at what can only be described as a draconian policy; furthermore, we'd question whether there's any evidence it is justified," National Secretary of the CPSU, Nadine Flood said.

National Film and Sound Archive overhaul

The National Film and Sound Archive of Australia is introducing a new business model following a six-month review, and will cut staff, Chief Executive, Michael Loebenstein has said.

"Under the new structure, we will be taking some hard decisions to reduce our staff numbers," he said, adding that changes would be evident in public programs and outreach activities in the ACT and across Australia.

"We are working closely with staff to manage this through redeployment, natural attrition and voluntary redundancy," he said.

Doctors join forces in Solomons

Two Australian doctors will join a New Zealand-led medical team in Solomon Islands to help with the relief effort following devastating floods and a series of earthquakes.

Four Royal Australian Air Force aircraft have already delivered thousands of hygiene kits, water containers, tarps, blankets and mosquito nets

The Australian Government is providing a $3 million assistance package via the Solomon Islands Government, non-governmental organisations and the United Nations, and has also provided 40 water tanks and funded mosquito sprays to reduce the risk of disease.

Go-ahead for Western Sydney airport

The Prime Minister has announced Badgerys Creek as the site of Western Sydney's new airport and expects it to see its first flight in the mid-2020s.

The initial construction phase was expected to generate around 4,000 jobs, and the airport development was expected to create 35,000 jobs by 2035, increasing to 60,000 jobs over time, according to the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott.

Planning would begin immediately for construction work to start in 2016, with the cost of the airport to be met by a private sector operator, Mr Abbott said.

Mitchells named master media agency

Mitchell and Partners Australia Pty Ltd (Mitchells) has been appointed as the Australian Government's master media agency for four years following a competitive open tender process by the Department of Finance.

Mitchells, in an alliance with Adcorp Australia Ltd, will provide both campaign and non-campaign advertising services and deliver operational efficiencies to Departments and Agencies through the amalgamation of advertising services.

It is mandatory for Departments and Agencies covered by the Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 to use the arrangement for media planning, buying and placement.

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