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We're backing PSA members, insists Marshall

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South Australian Premier Steven Marshall is “disappointed” in the Public Service Association’s decision to take industrial action over the outsourcing of some prison beds.

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The state Liberal government is on a collision course with the PSA after the state budget on Tuesday revealed privatisation plans, including the outsourcing of the Adelaide Remand Centre.

“The PSA should recognise that … we are actually transferring 270 beds to the private sector for management, but building an additional 310 beds for the PSA members to manage,” Marshall said on Thursday.

“If the PSA sat down and thought about it for five minutes, they’d realise the new government is backing their members a lot more than the previous [one].”

PSA general secretary Neville Kitchin said the government did not consult with the union before it announced the plans.

The union will rally on Monday with hundreds of members expected to march from Adelaide Remand Centre to Parliament House, a move which could send SA prisons into lockdown.

Marshall also responded to criticism of the planned TAFE SA cuts in the budget, which involves the closure of seven campuses.

“The new government is massively investing in TAFE,” the premier said.

“More than $100 million worth of new money over the next four years, and an additional $200 million in terms of new apprenticeships and traineeships.

“There’s never been such a big reinvestment in this area in the state’s history,” he said.

– AAP

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