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Graeme Kelly

Graeme Kelly OAM USU General Secretary: “Council jobs are integral to local communities and often the largest employer in regional centres. The Council Services by Council Workers Campaign is an attempt to secure these jobs into the future.

USU Launches campaign to protect council jobs from contracting THREAT.

Looking around your workplace how often do you see contractors who are completing the work traditionally done by council employees?

While at times the use of contractors may be necessary for a specific project or where specialist skills or plant are required for short term situations, the misuse of contract labour is a threat against secure council jobs. 

That is why the USU has launched our Council services by Council workers campaign.

Our campaign aims to turn the tide against the growing risk to our members’ secure employment.

We will oppose any unnecessary outsourcing and use of contractors to provide council services which could reasonably be performed by Council employees. 

Before contracting out, Council management must ask why Council can’t perform the work themselves. 

Many of these contractors are not local and the wages do not benefit the local community that Councillors are elected to represent. 

Local Government is often the largest employer in many regional communities and decisions to outsource work to contractors across the industry undermines job security. 

Local Government should be prioritising local quality services being performed by well-led council workers. 

Our campaign aims to create a shift to return to  more
secure employment.

Our campaign has already commenced. We have sought details from every council in NSW on the use of external contractors that are currently providing council services. We will update members as our campaign progresses. 

We need your support

We are calling on our members to support our campaign. If you witness or are aware of any inappropriate use of contracts or outsourcing we encourage you to anonymously report it to us. (see page 5 for how)

When it comes to vote at the Local Government elections to be held in September check our website at to see if your candidate has signed our pledge to support secure jobs.

I urge members to stay safe. Talk to your union delegate or organiser if you are concerned. Remember we are always by your side.


Graeme Kelly OAM
General Secretary
United Services Union