Protecting the Psychology Profession: HSU Psychologists Win New Positions in NNSWLHD

  • Published April 19, 2023

HSU members successfully pushed back against the erosion of career opportunities in strategic roles for Psychologists and ensured representation at senior levels for Psychologists in NNSWLHD.

Late last year, the HSU was notified that NNSWLHD Mental Health, Alcohol and Other Drugs (MH AOD) was advertising a Director role for the service which would not be available to Psychologists. This meant that, despite making up 30% of the workforce, Psychologists would not have an opportunity to become Director of the service, nor would there be representation in this strategic role.

HSU members fought back! In January, Psychology members endorsed a work ban in the following terms:

“HSU members within the mental health network of NNSWLHD will put in place workplace bans (which will at the same time protect client patient safety). These will include not completing outcome measures (funding based KPI outcome measures such as MHOAT and reviews) and will not do any formal psychological assessment (cognitive or neurocognitive assessments or assessment related to NDIS applications). They will continue to provide safe care by completing risk assessments and risk management assessments.

These bans will be put in place if the LHD does not initiate one of the two following options:

  1. Put on hold the current recruitment and re-advertise the role with psychology classifications included. Or
  2. Create a director of psychology clinical position (as per other LHDs such as CCLHD and HNELHD), to be recruited concurrently”.

As a result of this pressure the service has agreed that the Director role will be available for staff working under the Psychologists Award. On top of this, HSU members successfully obtained a further Clinical Psychologist position for the service to provide greater career opportunity and clinical support across the service.

This is an immense outcome, which only occurred through members standing together and making our voices heard loud and clear!

If you have concerns in your District or Network relating to career progression and roles for Psychologists, contact [E-Mail not displayed].

Now more than ever it’s crucial to have a strong, collective voice – if you aren’t a part of the HSU, you can join here: