Union survey to identify key issues for public sector women

By Melissa Coade

Wednesday October 20, 2021

A national survey of women working for the Australian public sector, NT Public Service, and ACT Public Service is now open.
A national survey of women working for the Australian public sector, NT Public Service, and ACT Public Service is now open. (yurolaitsalbert/Adobe)

A national survey of women working for the Australian public sector, Northern Territory Public Service, and Australian Capital Territory Public Service is now open.

This is the 11th ‘What women want survey’ that the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) is conducting to collect longitudinal data across its public services members. 

In a statement, CPSU national secretary Melissa Donnelly said the 2021 survey would be the first to measure the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on public sector women. The union began conducting the survey 15 years ago.

“Access to working from home arrangements has been critically important for women during the pandemic,” Donnelly said.

“This edition will measure women’s experience of insecure work and their capacity to work from home during the pandemic.”

The survey will review respondent sentiments about how rewarding they find their public sector work; how supported they feel; whether they feel caring responsibilities have impacted career opportunities; financial security for retirement; and the effect of the pandemic on accessing working from home arrangements. 

Donnelly said public sector job security will also be a focus of the survey, noting that since the 2013 election (which saw an LNP government in power, and led by three prime ministers — Tony Abbot, Malcolm Turnbull) concerns about insecure work had nearly doubled in the Commonwealth public service.

“Insecure work has been an increasing issue for all women across the Australian workforce, and public services are no exception,” Donnelly said. 

The CPSU national survey for women will remain open until 13 November, 2021.


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