Dunedin Community House is closed for the remainder of Friday

We are in an area that has been evacuated by police.  Everyone has left the building.

We hope normal service will resume on Saturday.

Independent report into MSD security breach published

MSD has released the independent report into March’s Individual Client Level Data breach. Human error is making the headlines but the report suggests systematic failures in governance and process.

You can join us for a frank discussion around on this on Friday 26th May at 1pm.

You can read it in full below along with an issues paper or access it directly from MSD’s website with their opinion. It’s release has been picked up by news sources and organisations including:


Radio NZ




Youthline have a released an App to help youth reach their full potential

Youthline (supported by Coca-Cola) have released an app that help youth explore who they are and become their best selves.

You can play online or get the app on Android or iPhone/iPad.

There are Good2Great weekends coming soon too – no dates for Dunedin or Southland yet but Oamaru is May 10-12.

Find out more from youthline.co.nz or watch the video below for an introduction.

Pay gaps and their resolution

You’ve likely read about the recent court decisions and government offer to settle a pay equity case for healthcare workers.

If accepted by Cabinet and Unions pay rises will roll out to care and support workers in healthcare in July 2017 and increase each year until parity is reached.

A few examples of the press around this:

ODT: Women set for big pay rise 18 April

Stuff: Health care workers just the beginning of equal pay story 25 April

NZ Herald: Watch: Kristine Bartlett’s emotional reaction to pay equity win 18 April

NZ Herald: Big pay rise for women: Deal likely to alarm private sector 18 April

If you are part of a non-profit that works in this area you’ll be well versed on the ins and outs and the top level effect on your P&L but this pay settlement is likely to be the start of a significant shift for many non-profits and not just those working in healthcare.

Commentators have suggested that we are seeing one aspect of systematic oppression of women in one area of work ending but possible effects could be:

  • Better qualified staff could be attracted to affected roles
  • Can more be expected of better paid staff?
  • Other aspects of systemic oppression weakening, but which ones?
  • A ratcheting up of pay for other posts within affected organisations may be expected eg supervisors, managers, administrators, CEOs? How would this be funded? What if it wasn’t?
  • The availability of workers in competing sectors may reduce as they are attracted to better paying work. Why work for a social service when health pays better?
  • Other undervalued groups may take court actions
  • The fight for fair pay may receive a boost
  • Other sectors may follow suit eg education support workers case is already underway
  • Labour market competition raising all wages

That’s a lot to think about for any non-profit employer when finding enough to pay current wages can be a struggle but it’s an opportunity for us all to consider the need to fairly remunerate staff not just to avoid court cases but also to do our part in delivering fairness.

Having recognised an open stable door the Government is hoping to ensure an orderly exit by introducing new legislation.

The Draft Employment (Pay Equity and Equal Pay) Bill is out for consultation now along with a redacted cabinet briefing paper:



Written submissions on the Bill are welcome until 5pm on Thursday 11 May 2017.

We encourage you to submit comments.

An interesting aspect of the proposed legislation is that it won’t address pay disparity between ethnic groups, age or anything other than gender.

Update: here’s the agreed position that is going to work​ers for ratification

Care and Support Equal Pay Negotiations - Agreed Position (1)

Connections April 2017

Artsenta is running an afterhours trial

From February Artsenta will trial after hours studio sessions for 8 weeks. This is for people who want to be creative but can’t attend during normal opening hours. If you know someone that could benefit from this initiative please pass this information on.

Artsenta is a community art workshop for people who have experience of mental illness, they celebrated their 30th year in 2016.

Sessions are 5-7pm on Wednesdays from 8 February until 29 March.

No referral is needed but people need to have had some contact with a mental health provider, PHO or GP.

Artists will be asked for a koha and will be expected to be able to work independently.

The sessions are in addition to Artsenta’s funded service.

Artsenta director, Paul Smith, said the initiative is being undertaken due to requests made by members of the community, “There are a number of people who have come to Artsenta and really benefited from it, but work commitments now prevent them from attending. We want to support them and also open the door to other people who work or are busy during the day.”

“We know that being part of a creative community can support people’s mental wellbeing and so its great to be able to undertake this trial and see what level of demand there is. But places are limited so we encourage people to register their interest.”

More information is available at www.artsenta.org – or by phoning 03 477-9566.Displaying image001.jpg