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Drip, Drip, Drip

27 Aug 2012

Sometimes, the forest is hard to see when you get confused by the trees. And speaking of forests and trees: with the slashing of 120 Rural Fire Service jobs, the public sector has now taken a hit of more than 1200 regional workers—people who won’t have a decent paycheck or benefits or security.

As NSW Public Service Association General Secretary John Cahill points out, in a statement released by the union:

The NSW Government’s agenda of quick and deep public sector job cuts is tearing apart the fabric of our regional communities.Not even vital regional services like the Rural Fire Services, Office of Water and Crown Lands can escape the budget razor.

And here is something worth taking a peek at. The drip, drip, drip of job cuts imposed by Barry O’Farrell is, perhaps intentionally, not being rolled out at once. Rather, it’s a cut here, a cut there—not big enough for the public to see the big picture. And if you look even further down the list, you can see what still is yet to come: thousands more jobs on the chopping block.

Region Department or Service Number of job losses announced
Grafton Grafton jail 108
Gosford Workcover and NSW Industrial Relations office 101*[100 Workcover jobs
re-located from regional NSW to Sydney]
Newcastle NSW Industrial Relations office 6
Illawarra, Wollongong NSW Industrial Relations office 7
Illawarra Illawarra TAFE Up to 250
Coffs Harbour NSW Industrial Relations office 3
Orange NSW Industrial Relations office 1
Wagga NSW Industrial Relations office 2
Regional NSW
[location unknown]
67 [17 March, 50 June] Office of Water; 175 Crown Lands and up to 350 Office of Environment and Heritage; 26 Forests NSW 618

Projected public sector job losses in regional NSW over the next four years [location unspecified]
Source: confidential Treasury documents covered in media reports


Region Department or Service Number of jobs
Roads and Maritime Services Up to 400 total
Education Up to 2400
Dept of Family and Community Services 900
Health Department 3600
Jails and corrective services 881
Centre for Road Safety 400