26 September 2023

Veteran Affairs promised to have more staff

Start the conversation

A promise in the election campaign to see the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) expand its personnel with 500 new staff members has been warmly received by the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU).

Welcoming the commitment by the Labor Party, CPSU said it would address critical staff shortages in the DVA.

“Labor’s announcement that, if elected, they will convert 1,000 labour hire contractors to permanent employment at DVA and create an additional 500 DVA jobs will go a long way to addressing problems that have plagued the Department for years,” the CPSU said.

It said CPSU members in DVA had been raising the alarm on the impact of understaffing and under-resourcing on the Department’s ability to deliver the comprehensive support veterans needed and deserved.

“Our members have detailed shocking levels of staff burnout and stress, high staff turnover and a workforce that has been de-skilled,” the Union said.

“At the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide, DVA Secretary Liz Cosson acknowledged what CPSU members have been saying for years – that the Coalition Government’s cap on staffing, and increased use of costly casual and labour hire contracts has created a growing backlog of veterans’ claims, which now stands at 65,000,” it said.

“When asked whether she believed the backlog, and resulting delays, contributed to an increased risk of veteran suicide, Ms Cosson said she believed it did.”

The CPSU said it welcomed the announcement from the Labor Government.

Start the conversation

Be among the first to get all the Public Sector and Defence news and views that matter.

Subscribe now and receive the latest news, delivered free to your inbox.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.